The upside to being always on at work

The upside to being always on at work

'The fastest way for me to go insane would be to try to work regular hours.'

Traci Fiatte likes checking her emails on Sunday evening. It helps her feel ready for the week ahead.

But about five years ago, Fiatte, the group president at staffing firm Randstad US, realised that her own workaholic tendencies sometimes had a chilling effect on employees.

"What I saw in exit interviews was that people were not wanting to get promoted because they were afraid that a promotion came with no personal life," says Fiatte.

"It was an eye opener. They were doing it because I was doing it."

Like Fiatte, more of us are working around the clock and checking in on the office when we're supposed to be enjoying downtime.

More than half of the people surveyed in 2013 by the American Psychological Association reported checking their work messages at least once a day during weekends, vacations and when they are out sick.

But, that's not such a bad thing for everyone, says David Ballard, assistant executive director for organisational excellence at the American Psychological Association.

Many workers in the APA survey reported being happy about the ability to blend their work and personal lives.

About 71 per cent surveyed said they had control over their hours and 56 per cent said technology makes it easier to get their work done.

"The positive aspect was a surprise," says Ballard. "People related that it enhanced their productivity, increased flexibility and made it easier for them to get work done."

Chris Hale, who started trade financing firm Kountable in 2014, doesn't mind checking in on work while on holiday because it allows him to keep running his business while spending time with family and friends.

Last summer, while on a live-aboard-boat with his family, he had an emergency call with an investor.

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