They can be hard to have. We worry about the other person’s reaction. Will they be hurt or angry? We worry about our own reaction. Will we hear something we don’t want to hear? Candid conversations are hard to have…
Recently I’ve been working with a number of teams who complain about work-life balance. They mean that there are endless emergencies, they need to work late, they get bothered with work on the weekends, and they feel stressed and pressured. Here’s my take. First check if it’s you. Do your colleagues manage to leave on time, ignore late night emails, and always take vacation? Ak them what you’re doing wrong. If it’s not you, talk to your boss about prioritization and planning. Better still, engage your peers and offer some concrete suggestions to handle the flow.
Here’s the golden rule and best practice for email after hours and weekends: It is incumbent on the senior colleague in the exchange to determine whether this email or text needs to be sent now or can wait until business hours. And that includes someone else’s business hours, no town halls on a Friday if you have staff in Asia. It is not fair to tell subordinates that you don’t expect an answer and just want to get it off your mind. That’s what time delay is for.
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