To make it even more exciting, or hectic, depending how you look at it, our business is super busy right now. You would think that with summer, things would slow down, but business is thriving. It’s buzzing in the hive.
And in the middle of all this great excitement, we’re moving our office. The good news to our clients…it’s business as usual. We believe that we are still able provide the quality of service that our clients are accustomed to. Sure, our email and phones may be intermittent for a few hours during the day today, but we still have ways to communicate with our clients. Our office just looks a little chaotic what with the boxes everywhere, and the walls becoming bare of colourful artwork.
We have a bright, shiny new office to look forward to. Onward and upward.
“Walk and talk. … You’ll be surprised at how fresh air drives fresh thinking.”
I always thought that golf was invented for this reason. Some of the best conversations can be found on the golf course. Not counting all the cursing for missing a good shot, though. Enjoy this brief TED Talk.
During these glorious warm summer months, and long days of light, it is a pleasure to take time away from the office and unwind. But do we really do that? Do we really get away from it all? Technology has allowed us to take our office with us. The impact of technology on our lives, at home and at work, can’t be understated. Work-life balance is very individualized. People are adapting and integrating technology in ways that work for them. So, the question is…
Summer can be a good time of year for recharging your batteries, but it can also be a tricky time for getting things done. With many people away on holiday, trying to schedule meetings is like herding cats. In terms of work productivity, how do you feel about summer being over?
Flexibility, cost savings, no commuting, increased retention, fewer personal/sick days and increased productivity are some good reasons why we should let employees work from home.
But what about the question of productivity? I’m still not sure of that answer, but I believe offering employees the option of working from home depends on the position, person and how much you want to influence your company culture.
We all know that working from home will allow employees flexibility and some will take advantage of their situation. But some employees are so disciplined that they give more to their employer. They set themselves up for success by minimizing their personal disruptions at home. So as an employer I could benefit even more by giving this employee flexibility to work from home.
Allowing your employees to work from home really depends on your company and the roles within it. You really need to set up the situation well by having clear objectives about role duties, how and when to communicate, measurable goals and instituting an audit system. At McNak, we have two positions that could allow a person to work exclusively from home. Ironically, these employees choose to work at the office knowing there is flexibility to work from home for some emergency cases. They like to be around our office “buzz” and say our corporate culture is one of the driving forces that makes their work so enjoyable. When they do work from home, they find it isolating, difficult for communication and leaves them feeling disconnected from the team. They miss the office dynamics.
In the end, allowing for a flexible work schedule must work for both parties, but use it with caution because it could negatively affect the company’s results and ultimately its culture.
This excerpt was featured in Business in Vancouver’s Ask the Experts column. Read the full article here.
There are days when I sometimes just have to stop what I’m doing. And so I stop. Most times it’s because my list of unfinished ‘to do’s’ and never ending priorities have gone to the red line and are about to create a landslide on me. It’s at that point that I try to remember what it might have been like at this time the previous year or even years before. It’s really just my general catch-all way of finding perspective on the situation. Even though I’m sure it’s just a matter of seconds, the distraction is long enough to break the cycle of my grind. My observation: today’s work climate is so fast paced that it almost seems to get faster with each year. So many new technologies, so many platforms to showcase competing engagements and deadlines. Naturally we adapt and try our best to keep up. And because we’re constantly adapting, we sometimes trick ourselves into thinking that what we are doing with our time is effective. When the grind is so intense it is easy to fall into routines that can actually lead you to be unproductive and quite frankly unmotivated and stalled. It’s sometimes best to just stop, regroup, and resort your priorities.
I really like Chris Brogan’s post, Grinding vs. Clocking. His one minute video clip reminds us of what we’ve forgotten that could make all the difference.
Just before I wrote this post I took five minutes out of my day to order some okespor water shoes I’ve been meaning to buy (on my ‘to do’ list) to go with a kayak that is due to arrive in time for this weekend. So in doing this, I’ve taken my time first mini time out. It’s a curious habit I have, and I’m sure I’m not alone, that I can leave on my ‘to do’ list things that can actually help me be more productive and recharged. I’m now ready to look at the rest of the ’to do’ list of my life and regroup. At the very least, break it up into smaller bundles so I can refocus on the things most important to me right now. And as a motivator to getting this done, I’m already visualizing myself on the kayak finding peaceful time to myself.
Hope you can get take a few minutes to get yourself out of your grind. Face it – we’re always in one. Just step out of it from time to time. Feels good.
Yes, all of these will undoubtedly help you in life, but here’s another tool that is so often overlooked: sleep.
My life has changed a lot over the last few years, and I’ve become increasingly aware of the importance of sleep. Nights out, work demands, sports, pregnancy, and a restless toddler all conspire against a quiet night’s rest. When I was younger I could make do with four or five hours of sleep, leaning on my coffee mug when required. Now, irritability and blandness creeps in where my creativity and sense of humour used to be. And now I realize:
Sleep brings more joy, effectiveness and productivity into our lives. It is vital to every type of success.
Arianna Huffington’s funny TED Talk about the importance of balance and getting your Z’s really hit home. A successful entrepreneur in her own right, she points out that having a high IQ or a busy schedule doesn’t translate into successful business or good leadership. Even the most brilliant leaders require time for reflection and rest to make the most of their abilities.
Ms. Huffington seems to be on to something! Years ago, she badly injured herself after falling due to exhaustion. She then re-engineered her entire life to incorporate more sleep. Last week she sold her 5+ year old company, the Huffington Post, for USD $315 million. Not a bad return on investment.