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The Fordyce Letter

Straight Talk for the Recruiting Profession

Cali Yost

Cali Williams Yost is the CEO and Founder of Flex+Strategy Group/Work+Life Fit, Inc., a research and consulting firm that works with organizations and individuals to make flexibility a lever for profit, growth and work+life fit. Clients range from BDO Seidman LLP and Quaker/Tropicana to the United Nations, Ernst&Young, Microsoft, and the U.S. Navy. Called ?one of the smartest? and ?sophisticated thinkers? by The New York Times, Yost has been shaping the global dialogue on work+life flexibility for nearly two decades. A former commercial banker and graduate of Columbia Business School, Yost is author of the critically acclaimed Work+Life: Finding the Fit That?s Right for You, the first work+life ?fit? handbook for individuals. Since 2007, she has served as an expert blogger for Fast Company magazine. An in-demand consultant, keynote speaker and workshop presenter, Yost serves as an evangelist for the broad organizational impacts of work+life flexibility ? from employee engagement, innovation, cost containment and talent management to global client service, sustainability, and disaster preparedness. Her unique, often contrarian perspective has been featured in numerous national media outlets such as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BusinessWeek, Newsweek, USA Today, NPR and Fox Business News. Prior to founding the Flex+Strategy Group/Work+Life Fit, Inc., Yost held senior consulting roles with the Families and Work Institute and Bright Horizons Family Solutions, two of the field?s pioneering organizations. In 2007, she was honored with the ?Rising Star Award? from the Alliance of Work-Life Progress.

Articles by Cali Yost

Entrepreneurship, TFL archives, The Business of Recruiting

Working for Yourself, the Perfect Work+Life “Fit?” It Can Be, But…


I often present work+life fit strategies to groups of people who work for someone else—a big company, a government agency, or an academic institution. Inevitably, a participant will ask, “So, Cali, what does your work+life fit look like?”

I’ll begin to explain that, “I work for myself, and…” but before I can finish, it’s not unusual for someone to interrupt with, “Uh, see you have the perfect fit. You’re your own boss.” Cracking a knowing smile, I respond, “Yes, working for yourself has benefits, but is it perfect? Not necessarily. Unless you’re careful, there are dangers that can dash even the strongest work+life fit against the rocks.”

Owning your own business does give you more control of how, when, and where you work. But, you’re also the only one responsible for making sure all of that work gets done.  And unless you’re diligent, it’s easy to become the business owner that’s all toil…and no life. So, what do you do to avoid this fate?