Time off is important for productivity
Sending a work email out of hours imposes an obligation, particularly
if your business has policies on how quickly employees should respond
to emails during work hours. If someone feels obligated to stop what
they’re doing on their time off to respond to a work communication, they
will become resentful and this will eventually affect their work.
Studies also show that it isn’t just the recipient of the email who
gets stressed out, it’s their loved ones too. The partners of workers
who received weekend work emails report higher levels of anxiety, which
only compounds the issue.
Worse still, many workers experience ‘anticipatory’ stress even
before they leave the office with the expectancy that they may need to
respond to an email when they’re out of the office. As a result, they
don’t ‘turn off’ from work at all, even if they don’t receive any
work-related emails over the weekend.
A sensible talent management strategy should focus on providing
workers with the best work/life balance possible. Doing that means that
employees should have their time off from any work-related matters, so
they can recharge and perform to the best of their ability when they are
Brilliant talent management means brilliant workers
Of course an operational emergency may means a manager has no option
but to send a message to an employee, but this should be the exception.
If a manager is emailing a worker simply to send a reminder for an
upcoming project, or just because they’ve had an idea, that’s not
Fortunately, there are strategies managers can use to resist the
temptation of ruining someone’s weekend with an unnecessary email.
Firstly, if something comes into your head that you need to share, use a
notebook or note-taking app for reminders so that you can send an email
on Monday morning. Alternatively, if you really feel that you have to
compose an email, use a delivery delay or scheduling function on your
Better still, anticipate any matters you think might crop up on
Friday afternoon and send an email then. You could even hold a meeting
during the day to review the week’s work and put it to bed before
workers leave for the weekend.
Finally, if, as a manager, you’re spending too much time dwelling on
work at the weekend, it might be time to consider if that’s affecting
your own performance. Review your own habits and your schedule at that
weekend, so you can enjoy real time off with family, friends and
hobbies, instead of focussing on work. You’ll see a big difference in
your own productivity and work satisfaction.
Companies that want workers coming in on Monday morning refreshed and
ready to put 100% into the week ahead should develop policies that
ensure managers aren’t expecting workers to respond to emails when
they’re not at work. Without guidelines and a focus on talent
management, employee satisfaction, productivity and staff retention
rates will be negatively impacted.
Contact us today so we can successfully guide you around the obstacles on your ascend to success.