Benay Informer 11/22/2022
You'll Thank Yourself for Disconnecting.
Good CEOs give their employees long holiday weekends. GREAT CEOs take long holiday weekends themselves, too. I get it. From open projects to planning for 2023—not to mention regular networking events, meetings, and holiday parties—there’s always something to do to keep your business running smoothly. Some companies require managers and higher leadership to take a certain number of days off a year. Though these are generally mid- to larger-sized companies, all CEOs at any sized company need to step away from the office for more than a day at least a couple of times a year, especially during the holidays. Cherish the special days you plan to celebrate with friends and family. The work will be there for you to finish when you return, and you will probably do it faster and better after a longer break. Even though you know you should take time off, the stellar, super-involved CEO that you are can get stumped about HOW to take time off. Here are some tactics I have found helpful as the owner of Benay:
Shut down your computer and leave it in your office. If you have it with you, you will be tempted to take “just a few minutes” to check your email. Trust me; those few minutes can easily turn into a LOT of minutes and even hours. When you care about your business as much as you do, it is easy to lose track of time when you’re “in the zone.”
Log out of work apps and turn off notifications on your phone. Those notifications are so distracting! Turn them off or silence them. Or - remove them entirely from your home screen, so they’re buried in the app drawer – you’re less likely to take a quick peek when they’re not in plain sight.
Designate a single point of contact for any emergencies AND clearly define what level of emergency needs to happen before you are contacted. You have trained your team; now it is time to trust them. In theory, since this is the holiday season, many of your clients and vendors will also be taking time away from the office. I can’t tell you how many times I have gone to “quickly check my email” on Thanksgiving weekend only to find no new emails and think to myself my email must be broken!
Bring your big projects to a pause. Before you leave, get all your larger projects to a point where a break won’t hurt the flow. That way, you can pick up where you left off a few days later and filter and prioritize at that time. You will also have peace of mind knowing you have nothing hanging out before you left.
Draft a fun, clear out-of-office response, and GO! You could go with a super simple, “I’m out of the office and will return and respond to your email on Monday.” But why would you send something so generic? Use this opportunity to let your contacts get to know you or your company better with a customized note.
Add a PS to your email signature in the week leading up to the day you leave. This will let your clients, coworkers, and vendors know that you will be stepping away soon, allowing them to prep on their end.
One final piece of advice: if you are traveling further than a quick couple of hours away, consider giving yourself one full day to get your life back together before returning to the office. You’d be surprised how life things can pile up while you’re gone. This will also give you a chance to return to your regular schedule a day in advance so that the first day in the office will not wholly shock your well-being.
We know delegating and stepping away is a tricky feat; put your trust in the expert hands of the folks at Benay so you can put your toes in the sand, or the pool, or the... well, you get the idea... for as long as you need to unwind and recharge. Take a look at my calendar and pick a time that works best for you to discuss how Benay can give you more time back in your life.
Wishing you a wonderful holiday weekend. Dawn
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