Reduce Stress. Switch Emails OFF After Work.

June 22, 2016

Switch Emails OFF After Work.

Do you switch your email notifications off once you clock out? No? I don’t blame you – it’s a harder task to achieve than it sounds! What if there’s an emergency that needs your attention? What if you miss out on a potential new contract? How will you know if your freelancer has been working through the night finishing those designs?

Now, I’m not going to tell you that you shouldn’t be doing this. After all, you are the master of your own life, and you are mature enough now to make your own decisions. But I do want you to think about something for me: Are your employees feeling pressured to take work home with them, and keep one eye open on their emails, even when work is done?

-Employees who check work emails from home suffer greater levels of stress
-Some companies stop servers sending emails to employees out of hours
-In 2011, CEO of Atos announced plans to ban email completely!

Out-Of-Hours Email Checking is a “Toxic” Cause of Stress for Employees

You already know that working long hours is a leading cause of stress at work. So it makes sense then that the CIPD recently published an article explaining that employees checking email outside working hours has been linked to higher levels of stress. After all, if you’re forcing (sorry, “encouraging”) employees to be responsive to emails when they’re off the clock, are you not essentially pushing longer working hours?

This widely-accepted trend of expecting your workforce to continue working when they are in their own time is dangerous, and could be causing serious health issues for your employees. In fact, according to the CIPD president Professor Cary Cooper, organisations should maybe even consider implementing policies which prevents employees from accessing emails during home time!

Some companies are already doing this. In 2012, Volkswagen agreed to stop its Blackberry servers sending emails to employees who had clocked out for the day. In 2011, Thierry Breton, CEO of Atos, even outlined plans to eradicate email completely, because of the sheer time being wasted by employees, both at home and at work, checking their inbox.

Do You Dare Let Your Employees Separate Home from Work?

The key message here is to let your employees have a life. If you want to check your work emails 24/7, that’s fine – but don’t expect those you work with to want to do the same. People tend to be happier, healthier and more productive at work when they strike the perfect work-life balance. Feeling pressure to check emails during family time is not the ideal way to striking this balance.

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