Work Life Balance in the Modern World
Prior to starting at FedEx in 2009, I had over 18 years of work experience…never before had I heard of work-life balance! Of course, companies I worked for said that they cared about their employees’ happiness and well-being, but there was no follow-through. I was pleasantly surprised to find out that FedEx actually walks the walk. The FedEx Work-Life Balance Program “was established to foster a more supportive work environment that acknowledges employees as individuals with priorities beyond the workplace,” and the Employee Activity Committees (EAC) that are present throughout the various FedEx Operating Companies only enhance the program.
I work in Monroeville, PA in a satellite office for the Big East Region of Inside Sales. Early on, I became involved in the EAC, initially to take notes and observe. But I developed a great interest in the EAC because we are the voice of our teams and the organizers and planners of employee activities. We raise money for these events by hosting contests, lunches, and collecting money to wear jeans on Fridays. As a committee, the EAC builds employee morale and motivates the team, giving employees the opportunity to network, usually in a social situation.
With football being such a huge pastime in the Pittsburgh area, the EAC planned a tailgate when the Pittsburgh Steelers made it to the Super Bowl. As a matter of fact, we tailgated during the play-offs, too! These events were fun with a little bit of smack-talk from the out-of town sales executives, and it is a great time to see co-workers turn into all-out “yinzers” in support of the “Picksburgh Stillers.” Whether we serve pizza and wings or have hamburgers and hot dogs, the food doesn’t play as big of a role as the time spent together. These events offer great team building and networking opportunities. Because the tailgates were such a success, we kicked off the start of the 2011 NFL Season with a cook-out.
Over the past two years, I have seen that with better morale and motivation, our work environment has become much more positive. With our three teams housed on three different floors, the EAC events bring cohesion to our portion of the region. Using the tailgates as an example, interspersed between the football talk are conversations about shared knowledge, what’s new in the world of Inside Sales, and what career opportunities are out there.
Here in Monroeville, and throughout the company, FedEx management recognizes that a positive work environment maintains and elevates productivity. Let’s face it, life in Inside Sales can sometimes be stressful-approximately 95% of all customer interaction is done remotely. Upbeat employee attitudes carry over to the customers. Being passionate about a job brings success. This is what the EAC strives to bring to our region.
Whether it is a holiday party or a summer picnic to kick off the new fiscal year, the EAC intends to create a positive experience for the employees. Thankfully, FedEx is the type of company that encourages this interaction among its ranks. In FedEx, the EAC is a committee of leaders, nominated by their managers, serving the employees in our building. We are not a club: we are all inclusive: everyone is welcome to participate in employee events.