Will you or won’t you? Should you or shouldn’t you … check your emails while you are on leave? These questions remain hot topics judging by recent press coverage. Some feel their bosses and today’s 24/7 way of working means it is required of you as a professional. Others say you can’t really switch off properly and get the benefits of your break if you are constantly on line.
Many of you will be just about to go away or just coming back. So I thought you might like to take a look at the coverage and be reminded of some useful things you can do to minimise email intruding on your vacation and making your return a misery.
Lucy Kellaway in the Financial Times, not surprisingly, dislikes those Out of Office messages saying you are on leave and feels that staying connected is the right image for those who want to survive in today’s full on business world.
My view? – well I believe in disconnecting if possible but being realistic. I would say restrict yourself to logging on once a day but don’t let yourself get dragged back into work detail.
Delegate responsibilities and do some work to cut your inbox before you go as summarised in an article by Darren Slade business editor of the Daily Echo.
With respect to Out of Office message, I agree with Lucy about banal ones. However, setting a professional Out of Office message can help manage sender’s expectations and reduce cyber crime risks.
Whether or not you disconnect or stay connected you will undoubtedly return to a bulging inbox and Timothy Stenovec on Huffington.Com provides five very useful top tips to take back control of your inbox.
Click here for the full article by Tim Stenovec.
For more tips and hints on how to deal with email both on leave and on your return see my recent blog on email security over the vacation and the seven step plan for dealing with the vacation back log.
But this is not just about individuals making the decision to log on or not during the holiday season. Companies need to give clear guidlines about what they expect. Just as you should provide guidelines on what is acceptable email etiquette/style for your business, you should also include what is expected from employees on leave and especially in relation to their Out of Office message.
This is an area where we can and would be delighted to provide advice and guidance on email best practice to ensure you and your most valuable asset (your employees) have stress and email free vacations and minimise the cyber crime risks associated with Out of Office messages.
Have a great holiday.