Christiaan Lam – over de dagelijkse avonturen van een mobiele manager
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Life balance triangle

Work, home, hobby: an impossible triangle?When I talk to an employee who is in a certain way feeling his life is unsatisfactory, I usually tell him/her about the triangle of life balance. Though there are of course numerous ways to talk about motivation, satisfaction, fulfillment, and more, this is an easy way of letting people look at their own life and do a quick evaluation of where the itch may be.

The life-balance triangle is actually about making sure there is a balance between the major aspects of your life and about coping with it if one of the three major aspects is deficient. The three aspects are Work, Home and Hobby.

Work Work is important in that is comprises of about 40 hours a week, not counting any other obligations you might have beside that. Included in work is carreer, money, collaegues, work that makes sense, etcetera. In short, it is about being content with the work you do.
Home Home-situation means having a stable place to come from and go to in more than just a physical place. It may or may not include a partner or family, children, a place to call your own, etcetera.
Hobby This includes the things you do for relaxation. Be it either sport, going out, playing computer games, hanging out with friends, whatnot. But it is all about what *you* like.

As a rule of thumb you can say that if one of the three is imperfect, having the other two as a backup will keep you on the road just fine. So if an employee has (for example) some troubles at home, you can do what is in your power as manager to make sure his work is alright and point him/her at the need to find something to relas. Or, if your employee has an assignment he thinks is boring/dull/has no nice collaegues/etc, help him and support him to have a stable home situation and has time to relax (or, in other words, do not put too much extra pressure upon that person).

And yes, I know there are similarities towards Maslow’s pyramid, the “Leary’s Interpersonal Behavior Circle“, and other theories. In later articles I will write about the uses of those in (consultancy) management.

So, if one of your employees is disgruntled about something, asking the right questions might help you find what is going on. And who knows, if you are disgruntled, asking yourself the right questions may do the same for yourself.

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