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The Custom-Fit Workplace: Choose When, Where, and How to Work and Boost Your Bottom Line

ISBN: 978-0-470-63353-3
240 pages
August 2010, Jossey-Bass
The Custom-Fit Workplace: Choose When, Where, and How to Work and Boost Your Bottom Line (0470633530) cover image
Ideas for transforming the workplace to fit today’s workforce

In this book, Blades and Fondas offer business professionals an indispensable handbook for transforming the way we work and breaking free from the old, inflexible, 40-hour workweek. The authors show creative ways for individuals to fit work requirements with life obligations, and persuade managers to adopt these custom-fit work strategies to improve their bottom line. Readers will finish the book convinced of the place of custom-fit work arrangements in today’s workplace—and of how honoring employees’ lives outside of work is an effective and innovative strategy for both managers and organizations. Featuring compelling stories of companies like Jet Blue, Ernst & Young, and Best Buy, the book profiles strategies that are gaining traction in workplaces across the country:
·        New twists on traditional flexible hours and part-time work strategies

·        Virtual workplaces

·        Results-Only Work Environments (ROWEs)

·        “Babies at Work” programs

·        “On ramp and off ramp” opportunities

Practical and engaging, The Custom-Fit Workplace provides individuals and employers the tools they need to be successful and happy both at work and in life.

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1 Work Is Not Working: The Case for The Custom-Fit Workplace.

2 The Custom-Fit Workplace: Business Benefits.

3 Flexibility at Work: The Basics of Custom Fit.

4 Virtually Perfect: The Promises of Remote Work.

5 Off-Ramps and On-Ramps: Job and Career Lane Changes.

6 Contract Work and On-Demand Talent: A Fit for Some.

7 When Babies Go to Work: A Simple Solution to a Common Need.

8 A More Perfect Union: The New Face of Labor and Custom Fits.

9 From High Stress to High Commitment: Workplaces Rooted in Respect.

10 The Custom-Fit Future: Moving Forward.

Notes.

Acknowledgments.

About the Authors.

Index.

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Joan Blades (bottom) is co-founder of MomsRising.org, MoveOn.org, and the software company BerkeleySystems. Nominated one of Time magazine's Most Influential People, she was named 2003 Woman of the Year by Ms. magazine.

Nanette Fondas (top) is author of award-winning articles and research on management, organizations, and work. Featured regularly in The Huffington Post, Yes! Magazine, and her blog, MomsRising.org, she earned a doctorate from Harvard Busi?ness School and a master's from Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar.

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Blades (The Motherhood Manifesto) and Fondas explore the latest innovations in flexible work arrangements – from Babies-at-Work to Results-Only Environments - in this guide to the increasingly-customized workforce. The authors do a good job of portraying the multiple, and often conflicting, demands on the modern worker; children, colds, commutes, continuing education, caregiving for elders, and career ladders all compete for workers' energy, time, and attention. They point out common barriers to progress, the traditions, conventions, mistrust, and misunderstandings that prevent workers and employers from arranging a better fit. Blades, who co-founded Moms Rising, and Fondas, an award-winning journalist, come equipped with the usual success stories about novel arrangements improving productivity and profits in the workplace but offer little data to support tangible results, instead relying on stats like "a 400% increase in the number of employees who reported feeling "good" or "great" about their worklife balance." To truly convince the skeptical, more research is required. However, Blades and Fondas present a fine compendium of alternative work arrangements for managers, employees, and human resource professionals to draw from should they find convention not working. (Publishers Weekly Online, September 2010)
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August 03, 2010
The Custom-Fit Workplace

We are standing on the brink of a workplace transformation, and Joan Blades and Nanette Fondas have designed the essential roadmap to navigate us through these changing times.

The Custom-Fit Workplace: Choose When, Where, and How to Work and Boost Your Bottom Line (Wiley, August 2010, 978-0-470-63353-3, $25.95) is the perfect, quintessential handbook for transforming the way we work in the 21st century. Offering proven best strategies for an alternative to the rigid 40-hour work schedule, Blades and Fondas encourage new, flexible ways of working that help employees successfully blend their work responsibilities with their life obligations and convince managers to embrace these proven, effective strategies.

It’s time for a change in businesses throughout the world: men and women need time to care for their children or aging parents.  Many are having a difficult time returning to their jobs if they take time off; dual earning households are increasing in numbers; our 24/7 work culture is placing an unnecessary stress on working professionals; and individuals at all levels in an organization are struggling to sustain a sense of equilibrium between their work and personal lives while making ends meet.

Considering the many businesses that have been hit hard by the economic downturn, it has never been more urgent to ally our work and home life to prevent an unwanted, unnecessary collision between the two. Businesses are seeking new, creative ways to preserve their talent rather than laying-off people and The Custom-Fit Workplace gives the best strategies and practices for creating nimble, productive, competitive organizations that satisfy everyone involved.

Highlighting compelling stories of companies like Jet Blue, Ernst & Young, Best Buy, Deliotte & Touche and the University of California, the book introduces successful strategies that have been spreading across workplaces throughout the country, such as:

  • New twists on traditional flexible hours and part-time work strategies
  • Virtual work from home and staffing entirely at-home workers
  • Results-Only Work Environments (ROWEs)
  • Babies at Work programs
  • “On ramp” and “Off ramp” opportunities

After reading The Custom-Fit Workplace, people will adopt new, efficient ways to integrate their work and home responsibilities, while managers will be persuaded to implement these flexible work tactics to improve their bottom line by tapping into the power of their key asset: their people. This useful, appealing, research-based book will present individuals and employers universally the tools they need to be pleased and thriving both at work and in their other life quests.

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