Billionaire Richard Branson advocates for flexible work environments. "I think work should be fun. It should be enjoyable. It should be satisfying," the Virgin Group founder says in a video he posted on his blog.
That's part of the reason he works from home six months out of the year. When he's not on the road visiting the hundreds of companies that comprise Virgin Group, Branson resides on Necker Island and can be found working from his hammock or bathtub.
"It's critical to get the balance between work and play right," the self-made billionaire says. "Find time for yourself; work hard but also play hard."
"Too many companies don't realize the monotony of a lot of people's day-to-day life at work," he continues. "I try to encourage chief executives worldwide to make sure that there's as much flexibility in the workplace as possible."
Branson thinks employees work more effectively "when they are given the freedom to make their own decisions." And that's what job seekers want. According to one survey, the top priorities for employees, after competitive pay and benefits, are flexibility and not having to work too much overtime.
Flexibility can also be an advantage to the employer: "There are many benefits, starting with costs, such as real estate and overhead, as well as recruiting," Sara Sutton Fell, founder and CEO of FlexJobs, tells CNBC.