IT Employment

Dogs, and other ways of creating work-life balance

The Nestle Purina Company allows employees to bring their dogs to work. This is just one idea for helping with the work-life balance of your work force.

I just read that the Nestle Purina Company allows its employees to bring their dogs to work. This is one measure that company takes to offer a better work-life balance for its employees. Dude! What a beautiful thing. (Short history lesson: Henri Nestle, who founded the company in 1867, was also instrumental in creating the first chocolate bar, so he's already tops in my book.)

Now, of course, a dog in the workplace might not sit well with some people, but the concept is, in my opinion, an ingenious and unique bit of morale-building.

Here are some other companies that are being creative in their quests to give employees a better work/life balance.

What could you company do to make your life more balanced, besides the obvious of asking you to work too many hours?

About

Toni Bowers is Managing Editor of TechRepublic and is the award-winning blogger of the Career Management blog. She has edited newsletters, books, and web sites pertaining to software, IT career, and IT management issues.

18 comments
maggie_t
maggie_t

Where I work a former manager brought her dog into the office with her one day on the way to the take it to the vet. Subsequent to that there was a Workers Comp claim due to flea and tick bites. So, if you decide to allow pets on a regular basis better to have a good exterminator.

skalley
skalley

To those that bring their dog in the office; There are plenty of allergic people, some of whom may work with you, who do not appreciate your pet in the office. For you it's a warm & fuzzy thing. For them it is a health issue. These people are there to make a living - not buddy up to "Ginger The Wonderdog". Thanks for being considerate of others.

Uglyfishhead
Uglyfishhead

And those of us alergic to dogs? Ugh. How about keeping the personal scents out of the office as well. We have some skunk people here that drive me away from the cubicle when they pass by.

bobijub
bobijub

it's simpler to take work home than take everything that is needed to create a home from a "furnitured" house. yes, again, there are always exceptions, but. ((((( ..... imagine a busdriver having a pet around .....

sissy sue
sissy sue

Great! Another way to impose those whom you love on other people.

kallom
kallom

I hope RAF considers a 'Bring Your Dogfight to Work Day'... But seriously: t's one of those 'bright' ideas that look so nice at the brainstorming session's whiteboard but cause much more trouble in reality.

Deepthy KS
Deepthy KS

A person should train themselves to separate them to the roles like Employee and a person.Once swiped in be an employee, plan your work and finish it within time.Once logged out be a person and not an employee.Should learn to have a good control our mind -a first and the foremost example of "virtual reality"

roqsmugler
roqsmugler

wish that i can have a personal aquarium in the office..imagine piranha's playing while doing network troubleshooting via remote desktop..

Gochoa3664
Gochoa3664

Bring your kid to work once a year is enough for me...my dog is better behaved than most kids but I wouldnt put my dog in a situation that could cause discomfort to others. I work enough hours in 3 days to fill a 50 hour work week...so if my company wanted to appreciate me and do more life/work balance (espc since this will be the 3rd yr I wont be getting a raise) I would love a 4 day work week and I would love to work one of those days from home. THEN I could spend more time with my fur babies and my family w/out imposing my cute little monsters on someone that doesnt think they are as cute as I do. All tho, a salary increase to justify all the hours I put in would be appreciated too. :)

rfray
rfray

You could always ask for a posting overseas! A recent HSBC survey asked expatriates to rank the country they lived in on over 50 criteria - one of which was work-life balance. It's interesting to see how your country compares with the other countries for work-life balance - even if only to daydream for a little while! Here's a world map with the best work-life balance countries highlighted: http://bit.ly/izt3M8

gmacari416
gmacari416

The problem I have with this article is, bringing personal stuff TO WORK. This is not a balance. Work is AT WORK, Life is AWAY FROM WORK. To me a work-life balance is the equalization of time spent for work and life (personal stuff). If we mix the two, we will have one steamy load.

rfolden
rfolden

Really, I don't think pets should be allowed at work. What may be perceived as stress relief for one may be a stressor for others. Please, keep the animal hater comments to yourself. I have dogs and cats, and I sure as heck don't think bringing them to work is a good idea. Most folks dogs, in particular, are not near as well behaved as they think they are. In addition, all dogs bite. Best bet: leave the animals at home.

david.shorr
david.shorr

That's all I need - people bringing their furry four legged children into work. I suppose those nice well-trained pets never howl, poop on the floor, get into fights or tear anything up. Reminds me of the time I rode my bicycle over to visit my buddy who has a big chocolate lab. This is the friendliest dog in the world - normally runs around loose at the soccer leagues with hundreds of children. He walks up to me grinning and wagging his tail, then sinks his teeth in my thigh and rips my leg open. Can't wait till that happens at my job.

Kel78
Kel78

At my job we have bring your dog to work day as well as Cat day and Bring your exotic pet to work. Though at my job this is more of an employee appreciation play than one of work life balance. While they are not allowed everyday or all on the same day (that would be problematic) they each are allowed once a quarter. They don't have to be 'grouped together' because we require them on leashes or to have them baby gated inside ones cube or office. Another thing we do is provide telecommunicating options to call center agents and also offer laptops when you abosolutely need to work from home.

erica
erica

A few things they could do is really encourage, "Bring your Child to work day" as well as allowing us to bring a pet to work on a regular basis. Of course, allowing this, would require that the offices be set up in such a way that those who like dogs are grouped together so that Dog's don't end up wandering into areas where there are others who don't like dogs. Telecommuting would also be helpful, even if it meant a slight pay cut.

AdamF75
AdamF75

I guess you know now but a dog 'grinning' I.e. showing it's teeth is not happy, stay away. And a dog has plenty of wags, not just when happy.

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