Ah, good question. I should’ve elaborated: it’s just that, the work/personal life balance. It’s that subconscious perception that gets created: employees, i.e., all of us, are “always available” because we have a company-device with LTE coverage, even if we’re not required to be online.
The recent internal study by Microsoft, published at HBR.org, had some poignant data:
- Before the crisis, we typically saw a 25% reduction in instant messaging during the lunch hour, but now that reduction is down to 10%.
- A new “night shift” has taken root, which employees are using to catch up on work — and not only focused individual work. The share of IMs sent between 6 PM and midnight has increased by 52%.
- Employees who had well-protected weekends suddenly have blurrier work-life boundaries. The 10% of employees who previously had the least weekend collaboration — less than 10 minutes — saw that amount triple within a month.
The blurred work-personal boundary was one reason we’d ended our Slack organization & moved to Basecamp (no advertisement for it here, heh; there are many and probably better options). Even as Basecamp is a tad dated and the apps are in need of a touch-up, it’s reduced stress and increased project awareness without the “you need to be constantly catching up” vibe.
I’m likewise not enamored about having a second mobile phone to keep up with, haha. Laptops, so far, have sufficed well enough.
Not that I’m set in my ways: I’m sure there are probably better ways to manage this problem that I’ve not really thought about.