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The Impact of Divorce In The Workplace

Reducing the Impact of Divorce in the Workplace


Divorce or a breakdown of a co-habitation relationship is an extremely emotional process. While divorce is a personal matter the emotional impact can spill over into the workplace suddenly making it a public affair. There are so many unknowns about divorce that people are often confused, filled with fear and unsure of how to navigate the process.

In an effort to better heal and deal with the divorce process privately, many individuals seek individual counseling. However, not all therapists are equipped to help their patients understand the specifics of divorce to alleviate many of their concerns i.e. the legal process, financial impact or child custody and visitation issues. As a result, an individual’s world is temporarily turned upside down, triggering unsettling and distressful emotions. The effects of the emotional distress in the workplace can be devastating.

On a classic rating scale of stressful life events, divorce consistently ranks No. 2, second only to the death of a spouse or child. The process of getting divorced is an emotional roller coaster which can impact people's ability to be mindful on the job.

Although divorce is primarily a personal heartbreak, the effects spill into the workplace; at the extreme costing one to lose their job not to mention a good portion of their wealth, and it can even affect the organization’s reputation. People often feel overburdened and lack confidence; it is not surprising how many buckle under the pressure.

The Impact of Divorce in the Workplace

It is well documented that divorce reduces worker productivity. If one were to do a cost benefit analysis of the effects of divorce in the workplace, one would find that the financial costs to the organization can be enormous. Research indicates that:

  • The average cost of divorcing employees to an organization is $83, 171 per year*
  • Child custody issues can create significant cost for employers which include administration of health care, absenteeism, time off for court dates and shortened work hours for the divorcing.**
  • It can take up to 5 years for employee productivity to rebound after divorce**
  • Workers in domestic disputes become unavailable for travel or extended hours**

In addition, if key executives are faced with marital separation and/or divorce this situation can have a much more dramatic impact on the organization such as taking important people away from the workplace and can have a very disruptive effect on the organization’s business. When employers are able to help employees through this difficult, potentially distracting, and all too common situation, it can pay valuable dividends for both. When people are distracted, they make more mistakes and work more slowly. If they're feeling depressed, their creativity will be down. If they're feeling angry, they may project some of that anger onto co-workers or even customers.

To help overcome these issues, there needs to be a greater understanding of this new phase of life, the new family structure, the superior parenting skills required, and the shared parental responsibility necessary. By educating employees about the impact of divorce and how to effectively manage the divorce process, it will lead them to a greater understanding of what needs to be done. This will successfully help employees divorce with focus, hope and confidence, thereby enabling them to contribute more effectively to their job; and for their employer, to see a return on their investment, as employee productivity is not diminished as significantly.

This can be accomplished through a unique and innovative program assisting employers to minimize the cost of divorce in the workplace, while also being sensitive to the needs of their employees. By implementing The Smart Divorce® Resource Tool Kit., an organization can offer value added programs with a focus towards providing health and productivity solutions. And, an informed employee is a productive employee.

In addition, divorce lawyers, mental health professionals and other experts in the divorce field might also find these programs beneficial for clients, after all, an informed client is a smart client.

The Smart Divorce® Resource Tool Kit

The Smart Divorce Resource Tool Kit is designed specifically to meet an organization’s or divorce professional’s needs -- to help reduce stress, educate and inform their employees/clients about the divorce process in a cost effective, easy to understand way. Guidance and information from leading family law lawyers, mental health professionals, and parenting experts well versed on the needs of those in the divorce process are included. And, it’s put together in one smart package, making it uncomplicated, and effortless to provide.

The basic kit contains 4 CDs covering the myriad of issues, concerns and questions most people have about divorce – removing the mystery, complexity, and confusion about divorce. Also included are Smart Guides which add another layer of detail to The Smart Divorce Audios, and provide a step by step plan for going through the divorce process.

The Smart Divorce Audios. These unique and informative CDs provide tips and strategies to help navigate this difficult time, educate listeners about the divorce process and provide practical information on getting through it with focus, hope and confidence.

  • Audio 1 – The Emotional Divorce
  • Audio 2– The Legal Divorce
  • Audio 3 – Smart Co-Parenting: Putting Your Children’s Best Interests First
  • Audio 4 – Rebuilding Your Life Post Divorce

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