Where’s the play in work?


There are times when, like today the sun is shining and I simply want to play hooky… and you know what I can often structure my day so that I can and work say in the evening or at the weekend. But not all business owners can do that and its rare that the people in the business can too so how can you make work play?

It’s a tad ironic that business owners sight one of the main reasons for setting up their own business is to have more time for family, themselves, and to do fun things but that’s often forgotten in the busyness of running a business or because of client deadlines. Strategy and planning is key to managing the balance but it’s also about priorities. Our personal priorities have to be given consideration too and if we keep pushing those back it’s going to have an overall impact on how we feel about the business.

And what about everyone else in the business, are we encouraging them to forego time to enjoy life too? In the long run how does that really help? How many people are regularly working more extra hours? But why are they working them? How much value is that really adding to the business especially if it’s become the norm? We’ll explore this more another time but just take some time to think about it… and when was the last time you said ‘the sun’s shining, go home and enjoy the rest of the day?’

So where is the play in work?

  • What are the fun things you love to do… you know the things you did in the early days? Yes, there was a lot of setting up but I’m very sure there were other activities that you found were more like play than work. Reflect on those and then pick one to do a week. And how about the other’s can they do the same too?
  • What would happen if you suggested that the business operated summer hours for the rest of the summer so could all could enjoy some down time during the day or finished earlier and had some time to spend with the family? It could be that people say take an hour on emails/tasks in the evening or better still use that time to plan the next day, think about a project that’s coming up?
  • Or could you simply adjust the working day or week? Yes, there maybe some deadlines but how can you all manage each week so the deadlines are met and still have some time for some R & R? Perhaps it’s about working a bit smarter, less thinking about ‘the what ifs’ and just doing? How can you structure the work so that everyone has the same opportunity? Is it really about being in the ’office’ from 9 – 5, 8 -7? Or is it about quality and overall output?
  • I don’t know about you but there’s often a feeling of ‘lightness’ about people when they’ve had time off, even more so in the summer. Wouldn’t it be great if that could be an all year round thing? Because there’s absolutely no reason why you and I can’t make that happen in the business. If we think about it its something that’s very achievable.
  • If you reinstated more play in work what would be the real loss and would be the real gain? I’m pretty sure there would be a significant net gain, aren’t you?
You know what they say about all work and no play… here’s your chance to make a change…

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