Making a Job Share Work

Published Tuesday, March 01, 2011 5:01 PM

For many workers, job shares are the Holy Grail of employment. Part-time days, full-time confidence that the bête noire of part-time employees-work encroaching at home-will be kept at bay by job share partners. For working parents, job shares are particularly desirable, providing the chance to maintain a paycheck and career while enjoying more time at home than a typical job allows.

Job shares may hold great appeal, but in our they are hard to come by and in Recession-crunched economy getting harder still. According to the Wall Street Journal,only 13 percent of employers offer job shares, down from 20 percent in 2007.

If you're lucky enough to have a job share, or are hoping to persuade a boss that one makes sense, read on for tips for making a job share work.

Pick the right partner. Before committing to a job share be sure that your work styles and work ethic are in sync. Neither partner wants to get stuck with a partner unwilling to pull their weight. Take time to assess your compatibility.

Communication is key. Job share partners must be excellent communicators. Consider a nightly check-in to debrief each other so that partners can hit the ground running in the a.m.

Create overlap. Design your work week to ensure that you and your partner share one day of office overlap. Schedule important meetings on your shared day and use the day to fine-tune synergies.

Make your case. Show your manager (and your other colleagues) that your collaboration allows the company to retain two excellent employees, who can in fact, perform the job better than one individual.

For more information on job sharing, as well as profiles of job share partners and how they make it work, read The Sustainable Side of Job Sharing. 

Do you have share a job? How do you and your partner make job sharing work? What are some pitfalls to avoid? Share your thoughts here and at the Pendaflex Facebook page.

by Bradley Eggers


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