Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association


July 29 2013

The Warning Sign that You’re Working Too Much

By Daniel Metz, Specialist, Marketing

Ah, summer. It’s the season that used to be associated with getaways, flexible Friday hours and a slow from the frantic pace of the rest of the year in the office. Note: pay close attention to the used to in that sentence.

According to a study of more than 2,000 American adults conducted by Harris Interactive, 61 percent of employed vacationers plan to work during their time away from the office. Last year, the same study revealed that just 52 percent of those vacationers felt the need to stay connected to work while away. As more vacationers turn time away into time to accomplish more, here’s a look at some of the exciting plans that respondents in the study have in store for their breaks from work.

  • Reading work-related emails - 38 percent
  • Wanting work-related access to a document on work/home computer - 32 percent
  • Receiving work-related calls - 30 percent
  • Receiving work-related text messages - 24 percent
  • Being asked to do work by a boss, client or colleague - 20 percent

SEE ALSO: American Workers Are at a Breaking Point

In today’s always-on business environment, it’s easy to fall into the trap of ensuring that you’re always accessible for your boss or your co-workers, but that trap can quickly pave the way to feeling burnt out about your work and creating damaging effects on your personal life. A recent survey of 1,000 working parents in the UK revealed that 83 percent feel guilty about the amount of time they spend working while another survey from project management firm Wrike showed that 87 percent of business owners, executives, managers and team members say they regularly overwork.

Leslie Perlow, professor at Harvard Business School and author of Sleeping With Your Smartphone, recommends that teams set boundaries for communication and decide who will be on-call for off-hours business needs. Ultimately, her research shows that understanding how to disconnect can lead to greater employee engagement and greater levels of productivity.

Are you taking a vacation this summer? How do you plan to actually keep your eyes away from work emails and your ears away from work calls? Share your strategies in the comments section below to help your fellow meeting professionals avoid the stress of always working, all the time.

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