…is an aspect of professional life where I thought I’d long held a consistent opinion – that it was important for individuals to experience their weekends as just that — end of a work-week. So they could recharge their energy levels for the week ahead. I hadn’t ever thought, however, that the end of a work day came religiously at a certain hour as that attitude to working had been akin to an uninspiring, robotic work model where one’s relationship to work didn’t mean much to an individual. Something I hadn’t ever wanted for myself. So when I come across individuals declaring that they cannot bear to look at a screen once back home, I don’t think highly of that perspective of their work … I’ve always wanted people to be invested in their work so they should feel inspired to bring their work to a satisfactory level each day — and if that doesn’t happen in those hours onsite, a laptop in hand can always change that later. However, I realize that this view is all very well for folks like me who’re addicted to their screens, have blurred lines between what they read or do at work or for pleasure, and do not have the constraints of a fixed location of work every day. Most professionals have it tough at work in terms of deliverables, meetings, deadlines and targets, and they’re only too relieved to switch it all off to take that long drive back home.
A read of Jessica Lee’s post on the subject has further cleared my confusion on the subject. As usually happens with popular blogs, the comments on her post add such great value to the subject that I’d recommend them as highly as the post itself. And, I agree that work-life balance is about choices that people make about how they want to spend their time; by choosing to forego higher ratings, appreciation from supervisors, gratitude from colleagues or finished targets for whatever it is they do off work. The point on whether HR can influence that mindset is important – I believe that it’s HR’s ethical responsibility to clearly communicate the work culture so the person can choose to accept that work or move on, and keep a perspective that helps his employer.
What’s your own view of using your keyboard after 6:00 pm?