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The demand — and sometimes expectation — to be ‘connected’ to work 24/7 has lead to a definite need to review business etiquette in the digital age.
This is especially true as employees are now bringing their own machines into work – iPad, Smart Phones, tablets, even laptops.
They are also bringing their work home, to the pool side, coffee shop, park bench….
And hopefully not to the party or other social-only events.
Though many feel there is an unwritten expectation their work requires them remain connected almost all the time, there is a need to occasionally unplug– totally.
It’s not in the policies but it is quite evident from the office politics and/or expectations others — especially your superiors — may have of your availability as well as the demands they place on your workload.
Without being totally disconnected on a frequent basis (at least one day a week as well as at least a couple of weeks in the year) everyone is contributing to the more than $4 BILLION cost that the healthcare industry has noted is a direct result of work-related health problems.
For more on this you can see our article The Price We Are Paying for NOT Unplugging From Work, which also points out the many health and mental benefits to be gained from TOTALLY unplugging from work.
As pathetic as it may sound, many feel it is a bit scary to disconnect from work and that feeling is on both sides of the aisle — however the pay offs are definitely worth it, especially in the production department as well as the physical and mental health of the employees (C-level as well as directors included!)
Countering These Expectations
But what happens when expectation (policy or not) meets conflicting situations as well as environment?
What do you do when your employer expects you to be connected, even during a conference or webinar?
Here you, even as an employee, have to sell the value of the conference or webinar — especially to a supervisor or C-level employee that appears to have an insecurity that turns employees into logistical pacifiers.
But the lack of disconnecting goes beyond the workplace — if you are devaluing the very focus you should be having at the moment, this trend will carry over into the home life… usually, not noticeable or very concerning at first, but a trend that will turn into a habit.
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A habit that will place those you should be caring for on hold, long after you have left your current place of employment.
What we keep in front of us, where we focus, is where we go…
Food for Thought
Something to think about…
Many of us do not like where we work and what we do, yet how many will change what we keep in front of us?
Where we invest most of our time, do we not value that most ?
The concept of Work-Life Balance assumes that somehow work is separate from life
The reality is life and work are not two mutually exclusive things in our lives
Something else to think about…
Is not work a part of life?
Is not work one component of life?
In reality, when did anything in your life come to a standstill just because you were or are working?
If work were separate from life then why does our health suffer when we do not take a break?
Finally, when was the last time anyone was able to balance a part of something with the whole?
The Last Word
Let us know what you think in our comments section below
what modifications would you recommend for your workplace?
What resistance do you get or think you will get if you were to address this at work?
Can you even talk about this without becoming ‘marked’?
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Garrett is the publisher, editor, writer forThe HRIS World Research Group, which includes The HRIS World, The HRIS World Research, The HRIS World Jobs, The HRIS World News, and The HRIS World Videos
With more than 20 years in roles as a client executive sponsor (#thwCES), project manager as well as functional / technical lead, Garrett is sought for his expertise for project insights, thought leadership, and team management globally.
He has been involved in large-scale and complex implementations since 1991 and has recently moved his operations to be with his wife in Brazil.
Garrett has had the pleasure of working with some of the greatest talents in the industry, and constantly shares his experiences and knowledge through content and webinars.
He maintains his fluency in Portuguese, German, French, and English with his various endeavors and contacts..
When not working, you will have to be adventurous to stay up with him as Garrett loves motorcycling, gunnery, boating, sailing, flying, and sports fishing -- and accompanying his wife on her various likes
About The HRIS World Research Group
The HRIS World blog, which is read by more than 50,000 from more than 160 countries monthly, manages to have more than 550,000 pages viewed monthly. 40%+ of the audience are decision-makers in their organization (and about half of that being C-levels!).
As CEO for CGServices USA Inc, he focuses on multi-provider, multi-line implementations consultation for HRIS systems
Council and Education Member of Gerson Lehrman Group Council, helping institutions of the world leaders meet, engage and manage experts across a wide range of sectors and disciplines.
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