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Workshop 13 (Half Day)

Creating and Managing Effective Work/Life Balance
Policies and Programs for the 21st Century

Sara P. Weiner and E. Jeffrey Hill

To be competitive in the 21st century, companies must create and effectively manage successful work/life balance policies and programs. Corporate research indicates that the inability of employees to simultaneously meet business needs and personal/family responsibilities is linked to attrition. In addition, there is evidence that successful work/life balance is related to other valued business outcomes (e.g., productivity, morale) for both men and women.

This Workshop will begin by providing a frame of reference for why work/life balance policies and programs have become of strategic importance, including demographic changes, legislation, and opinion data. Next the Workshop will focus on work/life balance policies and programs that have worked, including dependent care initiatives, flexibility in the timing and location of work, coping with work/life stress, barriers and facilitators to successful program implementation, and program evaluation. Finally, the Workshop will focus on the future to discuss creative policies and programs for the 21st century.


As we move into the new millennium it is clear that effectively dealing with work/life issues is a business imperative for companies to be competitive in a global economy. By attending this Workshop you will be in a better position to suggest how employees can maximize their productivity and contribution to the work place while they also fulfill their personal/family responsibilities.

Sara P. Weiner is a program manager for Global Employee Research in IBM. She received her masters and Ph.D. in I-O psychology from the University of Connecticut (1988 and 1990, respectively). Sara was the project manager for the 1991 Work and Life Issues Survey at IBM, as well as other work/life and telework projects. In addition, she has conducted research in areas such as empowerment, teams, culture change, downsizing, skills, and retention. Currently, Sara telecommutes from her home in Tucson, Arizona working on "virtual" teams with IBM colleagues around the world.

E. Jeffrey Hill is a program manager for Workforce Diversity in IBM. He received a Masters in Organizational Behavior from Brigham Young University in 1984, and a Ph.D. in Family and Human Development from Utah State University in 1995. Jeff has been the lead researcher for IBM work/life surveys in the United States, Europe, and Latin America. Though his IBM work group was physically housed in North Tarrytown, New York, Jeff telecommuted from his home in Logan, Utah for 7 years. Currently he is on IBM faculty loan as a visiting professor to Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, where he is developing and teaching a work and family course for the School of Family Life and the Marriott School of Management.

Coordinator: Jack Kennedy, Brecker & Merryman, Inc.

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