You have been working like a dog. Long hours, taking work home to try and bring a project in on time and in budget.
Family and friends have taken a back seat for the past three weeks as you work on this opportunity.
Your telephone rings. It’s your boss – asking for a meeting in her office at your convenience to discuss progress on the project.
You step into her office and she asks you to close the door.
She thanks you for the hard work you are putting in. She knows the hours you have done in the office and knows that you have taken work home. She appreciates you going the ‘extra mile’ and thanks you again.
She then asks if she can give you some feedback.
‘When I see you working these long hours as you have been over the last three weeks, and I see you taking work home in the evenings and over week-ends I get worried. I worry that you will burn-out. I worry that your relationships outside of work will suffer. I worry that you might resent work because of the way that it intrudes on your personal life.
What can I do, as your manager, to help you get your work done in a 37 hour week?
What might you be able to differently that would help?’
- What do you do as a manager to recognise and reward those that regularly put in the extra hours?
- Do you thank them?
- Does that encourage them to work even longer?
- Will that help you to retain talent in the long run?
- What example do you set around working long hours?
- There is a work life balance issue in your workplace. What is your role, as the manager, in helping to sort it out?