Work-Life Balance Strategy for Lululemon

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Here are a few tips about sources, subject headings, and strategies that you may want to start with. Note that these tips are just a start: think broadly about the sort of information you need and about who might have that information (government/association/academic/news/etc.).

Background & Tips

1. As you start researching this topic, be very open to all the issues and practices that might be part of a broad work-life balance strategy. Don't commit to a narrow definition until you have considered possibilities ranging from flexible working hours to work-from-home policies and family sick days.

2. The internet is full of suggestions on this topic, but your audience will expect you to provide research-based evidence to back up your recommendations. Still read blog posts and other things as they may highlight side issues, creative solutions, and key research (and researchers) that you hadn't considered, but be sure to take the extra step and actual research those issues and solutions and track down any quoted research!

About Lululemon

  1. Here's a 2021 MarketLine report with a SWOT analysis of Lululemon from our Business Source Complete database.
  2. Search in GlobalData for another recent company profile, complete with a detailed SWOT analysis.
    • Select the GlobalData source at the link above, then search for Lululemon, then choose the first result with that company name in the title and browse its "Other Available Reports" section for the SWOT, history, investments, strategy, and other sections of the overall report.
  3. Our International Directory of Company Histories has a 2010 entry for Lululemon that will help you understand their early years and how they got to where they are now.
  4. Statista has quite a few charts and stats on Lululemon.
    • If you don't see "Simon Fraser University" listed at the top of the page after clicking on that Statista search link, try refreshing the page or clicking on the link again so that you can get to our subscribed version of the database.
  5. See also Business Source Complete & Factiva for business news articles that touch on Lululemon.
  6. Our (new!) SAGE Business Cases database includes a couple fairly recent case studies on Lululemon that might help you understand their context

Articles & books

1. Try searching in Business Source Complete.

  • Be sure to look for articles about specific measures (e.g., flexible work arrangements) rather than focusing exclusively on articles that use the "work-life" term.
  • And try some searches that focus on specific anticipated outcomes: retention, satisfaction, motivation, productivity...
  • A few terms to start you off:
  • Work-life balance programs OR Quality of work life OR Job stress
  • Flextime OR Flexible work arrangements OR Working hours OR Work structure
  • Employee retention OR Labor productivity OR Job satisfaction
  • Burn out (Psychology) OR Employee morale OR Employee motivation

2. For a more Canadian perspective, try CBCA Complete and look for articles using the same terms (as keywords rather than subjects) that you used in Business Source Complete. Also try Canadian Newsstand for Canadian newspaper articles.

3. Both PsycInfo and Sociological Abstracts will have articles on this topic as well.

  • Start with a broad keyword search for "work life balance", then use the subject headings from your initial results to refine your search.
  • Here's a rough, exploratory search of PsycInfo to help you get started. There are some great articles in there!
  • Tip: PsycInfo allows you to focus your search on articles whose methodology was a "literature review." Such articles are often extra useful as they collect many articles on the same topic and sum up the current state of the research on the area: what's known, unknown, etc. Click here for a version of the rough search above that has been focused on literature reviews.

4. A good book or ebook on your topic can be a real timesaver as they've already collected and analyzed large amounts of information for you! Start with searches for the following subjects in our catalogue:

A few samples of the books you'll dig up with those searches:

Miscellaneous resources

1. You'll probably want to find details about the work-life balance policies and practices of other companies. Many companies don't publish such details. Here are some ways to deal with that problem:

  • Organizations in the public sector (universities, hospitals, government agencies, etc.) and member-owned firms (e.g., credit unions) are more likely to post such policies on their sites. Try searching for their HR dept. pages.
  • In part because investors are asking for such information, some publicly-traded companies are starting to provide internal work-life policy details, often in an HR or CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) report.
  • Many firms will highlight their work-life balance policies on their careers or hiring pages.

2. The Families and Work Institute provides research reports on this topic.

3. Surprisingly (?), large firms that design offices sometimes commission and publish research on trends in healthy workplaces. For example, see The Future of Work by bene and 360 Research by Steelcase. (These might be slightly off topic, but sometimes it's useful to look at an issue from a new angle to get fresh ideas!)

4. We've had 360W cases in the past that touched on similar themes. The research guide wikis for those cases may help you find further resources (although some of them may have a few broken links):

5. This report from Deloitte India -- Surfing Tides of Retail Change: A Talent Perspective -- reminded me that the major consulting firms (PwC, E&Y, Accenture, etc.) may have free reports on this topic. Search for them!

6. Satisfaction with work-life balance (2016 fact sheet from Statistics Canada)

  • For deeper history on the Canadian context, see also this article

7. Don't ignore the news! A good news article may highlight recent research on your topic as well as issues and perspectives you hadn't yet explored. See, for example, the many leads in this article: Companies will have to step up work-life balance policies as young people enter workforce

8. Don't ignore older academic articles. Even if you think their content might be a bit dated, good articles from 10+ years ago may have been cited by newer articles that could be relevant.

  • Even better, if you search for this article in Google Scholar, you'll find that over 200 articles and chapters have cited it since it was written in 2007!
  • And if you check off the "search within citing articles" box above those Google Scholar results, you can do exploratory searches to see if terms such as retail or pandemic show up in those 200+ post-2007 articles. Bottom line: Research is all connected together and newer research builds on older work. Your job is to find and follow those connections to build the story you need.

<No further suggestions yet - but keep checking. Also, don't forget that this is your wiki: you are welcome to add any tips here whenever you'd like. --- MB>