Debunking the Myth: Singaporeans Can Compete and Value Work-Life Balance


3 min read

In today's competitive job market, some argue that, Singaporeans lack ambition and can't compete because they prioritize work-life balance. However, this perception is inaccurate. This perspective underscores Singapore's unique approach to modern work environments.

Let's explore the factors behind this preference.

Quoting the article "The Big Read: S'poreans lack hunger, can't compete because they want more work-life balance? Not true and here's why" penned by Deborah Lau, TODAY:

" Alluding to this shift in a speech after being sworn in as Singapore’s fourth prime minister on Wednesday (May 15), Mr Lawrence Wong said: “They (younger Singaporeans) will strive and work hard for their goals, but they do not wish to be trapped in an endless rat race of hyper-competition.

“They want a refreshed Singapore Dream — one that is not defined by material success alone, but also offers meaning and purpose in their careers and lives.”

He added that the Government would thus find “new ways to be productive and innovative”, and to help a new generation of workers “achieve a better balance where work is purposeful, and life is meaningful”.

One of the ways this is being explored is through flexible work options, which allow employees to carve out a suitable work-life rhythm tailored to their individual needs at different life stages. "

This highlights a significant shift in the aspirations of younger Singaporeans, as articulated by Prime Minister Lawrence Wong. He acknowledges their desire to work hard and achieve their goals without being ensnared in a relentless cycle of hyper-competition. Instead, they seek a refreshed Singapore Dream that prioritizes not just material success, but also meaningful and purposeful careers and lives.

The government's commitment to fostering this new vision is evident in its efforts to explore new avenues for productivity and innovation. One such initiative is the promotion of flexible work options, which empower employees to establish a work-life balance that aligns with their individual needs and life stages. This approach not only addresses the changing preferences of the workforce but also aims to create a more fulfilling and sustainable work environment.

Source: The Big Read: S'poreans lack hunger, can't compete because they want more work-life balance? Not true and here's why

Why achieving work life balance is good?

  1. Improved Health and Well-being: Balancing work and personal life reduces stress, which can lead to better physical and mental health.

  2. Increased Productivity: Employees who maintain a healthy work-life balance are often more focused and productive during work hours.

  3. Higher Job Satisfaction: Balancing work and personal time leads to greater job satisfaction and can reduce burnout.

  4. Enhanced Relationships: Having time for family, friends, and personal interests strengthens relationships and supports social well-being.

  5. Better Employee Retention: Companies that promote work-life balance tend to retain employees longer, reducing turnover costs and maintaining organizational stability.

  6. Greater Creativity and Innovation: A balanced life allows for downtime, which can foster creativity and innovative thinking.

Read more about flexible work arrangements with Staytion!