Friday, November 15, 2019

Heading For Divorce, What to Do at Work?

Are you heading for a divorce, here are few tips on how to handle this at work. A marriage going awry is not unheard off and neither is a divorce. The process can take a toll on your personal as well as professional life in many ways.

The stress and anxiety bough on can often hinder with the productivity at work. The divorce proceedings may sometimes go on for months and so taking a break from work to concentrate on it fully may not be an option sometimes. In such scenarios it is suggested one makes it known to the reporting manager about the ongoing crisis. The reason you should let them know about the divorce is that you may require some off-time from work, there would be court dates that need attending to, finances would also be a worry, etc. Even though it is your personal life, it does have an impact on your professional life — and discussing this with your manager could help ease you through the situation.

You would need to make changes in your health care plan, insurance, taxes, etc. And it is quite obvious that your office would eventually find out about the situation. Hence, talking about it first might be a more sensible option here:

Discuss without sharing too much

It is not required that you get very personal when talking about the divorce unless you share a good rapport with your manager. You can inform the manager that you are undergoing with the proceedings and this would result in some changes in the paperwork. In case you require time off or need some other assistance, you can mention the same too. Ask your manager if there’s any additional paperwork required from your end.

Let them know what to expect

You should be honest about the situation and let them know that a few days of leave could be required and that there may also be the requirement of a loan or similar to meet your financial needs. Tell them that their support through this tough time would be much appreciated.

Don’t use the divorce for excuses

A divorce is indeed a very challenging time in your life, but it should not be an excuse for hampering your professional work. On days that you are unable to work, put it aside. But the days you are coming to work, make sure that you give it your 100%. Don’t compromise on quality and make sure that you put in a little extra effort for the loss of time.

Heading For Divorce, Talk to the HR

A divorce would probably change a lot for you. If you have kids then it would probably mean sharing custody or even having complete charge. So if you were travelling a lot for work, this would have to be put on hold or should be reduced. Talking to HR regularly about the changes that divorce might bring around the work front is essential. Usually, you can expect support from them, and they would modify your working style to suit mutual requirements. They would also assist you with a lot of paperwork that needs to be sorted out considering the change in your marital status.

It is also exhausting to go through these alone and getting support from your co-workers is a boon in such hours. If the managers and colleagues at your workplace are aware of the same, they can help you with a different stage of managing and thus ease this entire process. The HR could also arrange for a counselling session for you or help you reimburse the same from your health insurance. So while you may not want to say too much about what led to the divorce, it is imperative that you do not abstain from informing your workplace about the same.

Jappreet Sethi

Jappreet Sethi
I am a HR & Business Strategy professional with experience of leading HR & People Consulting practice of multinational professional services firms. I specialize in designing & delivering dynamic learning experiences in service of human development. I have over a decade of experience across various facets of HR and Process Consulting. I am a Six-Sigma Black Belt along with a certification in using Lean for process improvement. I am also a certified user for psychometric instruments like MBTI, FIRO, CPI & Saville Consulting Suite; I am among the few in India who specialize in using Art and Drama for Leadership Development and Personal Counseling. I have been rated twice as one of the Top 100 employee engagement experts in the world by a New York Times bestselling author.

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