14 HEALTHCARE CAREERS | 2018 | www.advanceweb.com WORK-LIFE BALANCE  |  HEALTHCARE CAREERS 2018 I n business today, leaders and organizations have to be more aware than ever of how their employees balance work demands and personal demands. Organizations are constantly focusing on how to improve pro- duction, profits and performance, while at the same time maintaining a high level of morale. The issue is the search for personal and pro- fessional balance. Because there are no defini- tive parameters for measuring balance, the real goal should be personal and professional sepa- ration. In the search for this delicate balance, a leader must first understand why separation is key, then understand the consequences when personal and professional lives overlap. Why separation is so important: As tech- nology has revolutionized the business land- scape, many professionals no longer leave their work at the office. This causes many people to feel that they spend all their time working or on call, regardless of location. At the same time, many parents are reprioritizing atten- dance at their children’s events and family lunch dates, using the same technology within the same time frames of “normal business hours.” As a result, many people are doing two things at once — and doing neither one very well. How many times have you seen parents at lunch with their child and all of their attention is devoted to their smartphone? Is that you? When your personal and professional lives overlap in this manner, both of them suffer. Problems can make more problems: If an employee is experiencing personal issues, such as marital problems or the loss of a loved one, it can be distracting to say the least. Personal issues can cause them to be withdrawn and less effective, costing the organization and also impacting other employees. When this hap- pens, no one wins. On the other side of the coin, if a leader is having a tough time at work and brings their pain, stress and frustration home, they can potentially take it out on their family, which negatively affects their home life. THE FACTS At the office: Jobs frequently require people to work late, to put in extra hours and spend days on the road away from the family. This is because the job needs to get done, and a true professional understands that they may have to miss a child’s event or be away from home at inopportune times. To be great in business, a person must make sacrifices. At home: Most professionals today work to provide for their family, and feel their family or personal life is the most important thing to them. Moms want to be moms, dads want to be dads, and people want to be someone other than what their business card states. QUESTION: SO HOW DO YOU DO BOTH? Be present at work: When a person is at work he or she needs to be fully present, no matter the family dynamics or problems. They must learn to leave these issues at home. The one thing that can make any family problem even more difficult is for that person to lose his or her job because personal issues are affecting performance. Be present at home: When a person is home with his or her family, he or she needs to HOW TO OBTAIN PERSONAL & PROFESSIONAL BALANCE Offering insight into a journey of separation By Nathan Jamail