How SafeX Provides a Work-Life Balance with Dianne Grote Adams

Balancing your professional and personal life can be challenging, but it’s essential.

Often, work takes precedence over everything else in our lives. Our desire to succeed professionally can push us to set aside our own well-being.

Creating a harmonious work-life balance or work-life integration is critical, though, to improve not only our physical, emotional, and mental well-being, but it’s also important for our career.

My guest is Dianne Grote Adams. She is president of Safex, a health and safety consulting business, who started her company in 1992. As a working mom with a young family, she wanted to create a company that would respect the abilities of people in a technical career while also offering them some flexibility. From its beginning, Safex has offered flexible scheduling and benefits—vacation, insurance, and paid holidays—for anyone who works more than 25 hours.

Did you find that you attracted the right team around you because of that philosophy?

A lot of people, I think, have this myth that part-time workers aren’t committed.  And they say, well, they’re not really committed to their careers. And I found the opposite. They have time to do personal things. And guess what? They don’t make doctor’s appointments during work hours. They don’t make personal calls during work hours because they have other days to take care of that. So I find actually they are probably more committed because they knew they have a special opportunity that others might not have.

But there are people who maybe can’t handle flex time and flexibility. They need more structure. Do you find that sometimes that’s a challenge?

I think there are certain people who maybe need more guidance or more coaching to help them learn how to manage flex time. Many of us didn’t grow up with that as an option, right? Can everyone be successful? I don’t know. But you’ve got to be able to manage responsibility and accountability.

What would you tell employers who are starting businesses to get into this mindset today? How do you get started?

It has been a focus on what does that person. What is that person supposed to contribute, what are they supposed to do? And if you can put a good definition around that and they meet that, then why should you care what the exact hour is or whether they rode their bike for an hour at lunch or they left early to catch a concert?

So in your journey, what comes easy for you in the work-life balance?

For me, it’s really easy to tell someone else to go take the time off. I struggle still with that work ethic that I grew up with, that I need to be first in, last out, and yes, I need to on Sunday night to prepare for the upcoming week. I just don’t give myself that same grace.

Hosted by Betty Collins, CPA, and Director at Brady Ware and Company. Betty also serves as the Committee Chair for Empowering Women, and Director of the Brady Ware Women Initiative. Each episode is presented by Brady Ware and Company, committed to empowering women to go their distance in the workplace and at home.

For more information, go to the Insights page at Brady Ware and Company.

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