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What do the Olympic Games and flexible working have in common?

cc: Smabs StubserA dream comes true for quite a few of the best athletes in the world. All nations are gripped by Olympic fever and London is the absolute sport-hub: The Olympic Games 2012 are taking place from July 27 to August 12 in the UK as the most important global sport event of the year. For sure the right moment to write a blog post about how the world and different nations who are creating and inclusive atmosphere whilst differences fade into the background. But what do the Olympic Games and flexible working have in common? And how should the Games help to foster a more flexible way of work?

At the moment employers in Londonare facing two challenges: 1) employees who understandably want to watch the Olympic Games as well as 2) a tense traffic as well as public transport situation which makes the way to work much longer or virtually impossible. What is an obvious solution for these two challenges? To enable flexible working! Regarding to a survey of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development 17% of managers want to allow flexible working while the Olympic Games and 13% want to make working from home possible. A really great opportunity to make our workplaces more open for better balance of private and working life!

Of course this is not a solution for everyone: Some occupational groups are in a greater demand during the Olympic Games, e.g. public transport workers, hospital staff, employees in hotels etc. Nevertheless it is a good starting point to offer more flexible working possibilities. And if this works out properly, one could think about other arrangements or long-term solutions as well – also without Olympic Games.

A more flexible and inclusive working atmosphere could be created also in a different way these days: Making it possible to watch some of the most important events together with the colleagues in the office could be a great team event which supports a better understanding and bounds the group together.

With this in mind: Let’s make the Olympic Games a driver for flexible working and an inclusive workplace!

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