How One 3Mer Balances Work Life with Home Life
Aug 12, 2019

Andy Combites’ FlexAbility arrangement allows him to be with his kids during the busy summer months.

Making summer plans for kids can be stressful and expensive, which is why Andy Combites, digital marketing manager in the Health Care Business Group at the St. Paul campus, decided to pursue a FlexAbility arrangement. The process was simple – he just had to sit down with his supervisor to figure out a flexible work schedule that would maximize his professional and personal productivity.

Andy is a single father of two – a 15-year-old daughter and an 11-year-old son. To help avoid the common summer ritual of junk food and video games, Andy works from home in the afternoons on days when his children are with him.

As a scrum master, Andy spends his mornings meeting with his team in the agile lab and his afternoons on conference calls with partners who are in Salt Lake City and elsewhere. These cross-city connections made his transition to working from home seamless. 

While many of his partners haven’t noticed the change, Andy has seen major benefits. On top of being around to support his kids and make sure they don’t forget to go to band camp or swimming lessons, Andy says his life feels less rushed. Being able to complete tasks as simple as throwing in a load of laundry or thawing meat for taco Tuesday dinner with the kids while working has freed up his evenings and weekends, reducing the amount of stress in his life. Which, in turn, has increased the amount of focus he is able to dedicate to his work.

“I’m a people person. I love being in the office and being in the agile lab interacting with people. But on the other side, it’s nice to be able to go off the grid and bunker down to get stuff done,” Andy says.  

In order to get the most out of his new schedule, Andy created specific guidelines with his supervisor. This is one of the reasons Andy believes his arrangement has worked so well for him and his team. He has specific dates for when the arrangement begins and ends, he is very clear on which days and times he works from home and when he is in the office, and he notes which types of meetings or events could cause him to change his routine. This specificity ensures that both Andy and his team have the support they need.

About FlexAbility
3M offers FlexAbility for nonproduction employees. FlexAbility is a simple, individual agreement between each 3Mer and supervisor for a flexible work practice that maximizes professional and personal activity. For more information on FlexAbility at 3M, visit our Life With 3M page.

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