Some people have asked me what I have learned since starting in Financial Aid, and the number one thing I tell them is flexibility. The world of Financial Aid changes every day, whether from the government changing something, or from the boss handing something new for you to do. It is a struggle to be flexible and stay positive all the time, but we must for the students or none of us would have jobs.
There are many advantages to being flexible at work, but I do not think we take the time to see what they are. According to americasjobexchange.com there are three major advantages for both the employee and the employer to being flexible:
Advantages – from the Employee’s Perspective
- Embracing change can expand your opportunities. Today’s work environment is always changing. This means that the employees who are able to adapt to this changing environment are considered a valuable asset. As I said before, we all know we are in an ever changing environment.
- Being flexible can help you strike work/life balance. The way that technology keeps us connected to the workplace means that the lines between work and personal time have blurred. Rather than resist this change, embrace it. Personal needs – once relegated to weekends alone – can be addressed more easily since we are always connected, in and outside of the office. So those late night emails or those long, stressful days before an audit are preparing us for life in the world.
- Being flexible will make you more responsive to change. The constant change of the workplace means that you need to adapt and respond to chang quickly. Resisting this can lead to undue stress. Recognizing and embracing flexibility will help you adapt to difficult situations more easily.
Advantages – from the Employer’s Perspective
- Being flexible signals that you value diversity in the workplace. Diversification of the workplace is the new norm. Differing cultures, religions, and employee needs mean that today’s employer must accommodate diversity when it comes to working, thinking and interacting with others. Being flexible will enable you to accommodate the needs of your diverse workforce more readily.
- Flexibility is a good management decision. Managers need to adapt to day-to-day shifts in workplace schedules – employee personal issues, an unexpected influx of work and so on. Being flexible creates an environment where employers and employees can look at work and personal needs in a balanced approach, which is mutually beneficial.
- Being flexible is a win-win. Being flexible with your employees is good for business. It builds employee trust and commitment, helps attract and keep key talent, as well as drives everyone to find solutions that work for all those involved.
It takes special people to do what we do, so stay positive and flexible.
–Brandon Winters, Manhattan Christian College (KS)
Brandon is a participant in the current class of the RMASFAA Leadership Pipeline. Mentees in this year’s Pipeline are all contributing blog posts as part of their leadership development.