Incentive - January 2008 - (Page 52)

IN HER SHOES Flex Your Choices How to Ask for Flexibility at Work BY TORY JOHNSON PROFILE INFORMATION TORY JOHNSON, CEO, WOMEN FOR HIRE Career-savvy expert Tory Johnson is the founder and CEO of Women for Hire, which offers a comprehensive array of recruitment services for women. She is a contributor on ABC’s Good Morning America and a business and career coach for AOL. She co-authored Take This Book to Work: How to Ask for (and Get) Money, Fulfillment and Advancement. lextime is an accommodation, not an entitlement. Slackers and clock-watchers won't get the benefit of the doubt. Good workers are more likely to have requests approved. So your first step is asking yourself if your performance is truly outstanding. If it's not, focus on improving it before asking for a special accommodation. D o yo u r re s e a rc h . Make sure your plan can work with your job responsibilities. If you're going to ask about working from home one day a week, how will your work get done? How will people reach you? Do you have the necessary setup at home to handle the work properly? Research other departments within your company. If someone else has had success with flexible work arrangements, that could help to convince your boss to give it a shot, too. The same is true for other employers in your area and in your industry. Those precedents can be very powerful in your favor. Re a c h o u t t o c o w o rk e rs . If you see coworkers who would benefit from a similar arrangement, join forces. There's often great leverage in numbers if you work together on a proposal that benefits the department and the company. Wr i t e a f o r m a l p ro p o s a l. Your proposal should present the benefits from your and your boss's perspectives. This is a F serious change; don't ask for it casually. A written document is also great if your boss has to ask his boss about your request. It’s better to have your words passed up the chain of command. One team learned this: A year ago their request for a compressed workweek was rejected because they asked verbally in an informal manner that clearly showed they hadn't put the proper thought into it. The second time they were smart—they put it in B e p o s i t iv e . Show enthusiasm for your job, and be clear about how flextime will improve your ability to do it. Be upbeat about your work. Don't say, "The commute is killing me, so I must work from home." Instead, explain how working from home will give you more time to devote to work and less stress, since you aren't sitting in a car for four hours a day. Be willing to compromise. Suggest a trial period and benchmarks to measure the success of “Show enthusiasm for your job, and be clear about how flextime will improve your ability to do it.” writing. You should do the same. A n t i c i p a t e t h e o p p o s i t i o n. Think about reasons why a boss might say "no," and offer counter-arguments. Before you present the proposal, figure out what the opposition might be—and address it in the proposal. If you think the boss will be worried that you won't be available for key meetings that might pop up, explain how you'd be willing to alter your schedule as necessary to accommodate such needs. your plan. Explain how you think the proposal should be measured by you and by your employer. You both must be satisfied for this to work. B e p a t i e n t. Even though we all love instant gratification, don't expect an immediate answer. If your request is turned down, ask for feedback on why the idea was not accepted. Ask to establish a time frame for revisiting this—and then be ready to go back with gusto. s 52 | Incentive | January 2008 |

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Incentive - January 2008

Incentive - January 2008
Editor’s Note: Out of SITE
In The News
Cover Story: Include a Meeting, Improve Morale
Case Study: DHL Delivers Recognition
Incentive Primer: How To Use Promo Products
How Bob Nardelli Rallied Chrysler’s Dealers
Incentive Interview: Ken Blanchard Says Be Nice
TV’s Extreme Makeover Motivates Giving
Pre-Employment Motivation
The Daycare Dilemma
Happy Employees Shouldn’t Mix with Sick Employees
Incentive Research: Consumer Promotions Report
In Her Shoes: Winning Approval Of Flextime
Travel News
Field Report: Barcelona
Field Report: Bermuda
Golf: Follow The Pros
potentials Here and Now
Watches As Jewelry
Awards: Online Gift Cards
Tech Gadgets for 2008
Last Word: Stanley Bing Bashes Bully Bosses

Incentive - January 2008