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3 Ways Flextime Could Hurt Your Career

It's the new American dream: work full-time, with benefits, but from home -- at least part of the time. But flextime gigs aren't always all they're cracked up to be. Before you assume that your flexible work schedule is the answer to all your work-life balance problems, here's what to look at.

balance 

(Photo Credit: Tim Pearce/Flickr)

1. Make sure you can really use your flextime.

Harris Interactive recently did a survey where they found that two-thirds of workers say that their companies would allow them to have a flexible schedule -- but 47 percent felt that asking for flextime would hurt their chances for promotion. If you can't use a benefit without being penalized, it's not really a benefit.

2. Figure out if the corporate culture works with flexible schedules.

The company might not hold it against you if you work different hours, but if you're missing out on meetings and informal collaborations that help get the job done and showcase your ideas, your career could still suffer. The best-case scenario is an organization where even the top brass work from home from time to time. They're more likely to accommodate you, both in terms of your schedule and in terms of the technology needed to make working from home truly productive.

3. Balance the job with your other priorities.

Working a flexible schedule might actually mean working more hours than staying in the office. Flextime won't necessarily take care of a childcare situation, for example, nor will it enable you to work another part-time job during normal working hours. If you want to take advantage of a non-traditional schedule, make sure you understand the company's expectations and your needs before you commit.

Tell Us What You Think

Have you made your flexible schedule work for you? We want to hear from you! Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter.

2 Comments

  1. 2 Rebecca Sanford 13 Oct

    This article is so discouraging! Flextime is a progressive concept and the traditional 9 to 5 office environment is truly becoming a thing of the past.  Shame on you for not being more supportive.

  2. 1 Worksnaps 29 Sep
    Always plan your schedule.. Your plan will help you discipline yourself and stay on schedule so you can achieve your goals. To start your plan, make a list of the specific goals that you want to accomplish within a set time frame. Once you have a plan, it's time to prioritize your schedule. Go down your list of actions and arrange them in order of importance. This will help to make sure you take care of the most important actions at the beginning of each day. 

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