The pace of change in life has never been greater. Think of the changes the creation and growth of the internet have brought about in the last 20 years and the modern-day workplace is now unrecognisable from what it was 20 years ago. And whilst change can often be a good thing, it can also be a deeply unsettling experience for employees if it is not handled well. We’ve all had experience of changes being rushed through an organisation with little communication, leading to an inevitable breakdown in trust and morale on the shop floor.
One of the greatest changes at work in the last 20 years has been the growing acceptance of flexible working patterns. Long gone are the days when we all clocked in at 9am and knocked off at 5pm regardless of the demands of family and personal life. And with growing diversity in the workplace, and the welcome acceptance of women as an equal and valued part of the workforce, it’s never been more important for companies to recognise the need for flexibility in their working patterns. So, if you want to adjust your work-life balance, how should you go about asking your employer? The first thing to recognise is that if you have caring responsibilities – whether for elderly parents, your children, disabled relatives or other dependents – there are legal rights in place to help ensure you can meet them whilst still holding down a job.