I work way too hard, for way too many hours a day, and have given up enough holidays and special events all for the sake of my job. I’ll be dammed if I have to take a phone call from work on my day off! Phew, I got that off my chest.
Now, let’s look at this in another light…
Why am I getting a call from work on my day off in the first place?
- Is there something I forgot to do? An important deadline missed or follow-up response to my boss that I forgot?
- Is there some emergency that they are calling me about? Is the building on fire?
- Is there an issue with one of our top customers that only I have the solution for?
This list can go on and on forever. But the thing that usually causes the most occurrences of “work-to-home” calls is lack of preparedness.
Have you put in place the appropriate policies and procedures so that others can “make-the-call” in your absence? Have you trained your staff and direct reports well enough so that they can properly adapt to any situation? Have you put them in a position to be successful?
If not, you better get used to these kinds of calls…
Too many supervisors want to be noticed or to be singled-out as the person that has all the answers and can fix all the issues. But what happens on your day off? Does your operation come to a screeching halt? Of course not, the business must still go on.
But does it operate in the same manner, with the same level of consistency and professionalism when you are not there? I hope so.
Here’s 3 things you need to stop getting calls at home:
Policies and Procedures
Do your employees fully understand what is asked of them and under what guidelines they are expected to work?
Are your employees REALLY trained fully or are they constantly coming to you during the workday to ask questions and opinions on their basic job functions? Aren’t you tired of them always knocking on your office door?
Did you leave a junior staffer or manager alone on a busy day, and without additional support?
Are they empowered to make decisions or are you a micro-manager and need to control every little thing?
A Position to be Successful
A waiter can’t be successful without enough glassware or plates to serve the guests. A technician can’t do his/her job if the parts and equipment he needs is locked in a cabinet that no one other than you has the key to. Did you schedule the proper amount of employees to handle the anticipated business today? And don’t expect your customer care representative to have anything other than irate customers if your network consistently goes down whenever the call volume is high.
How do you deal with work issues like these? You get a call from work, even on your day off, right?
No one wants that?
You should be in the park playing with your kids, out to dinner with your spouse, enjoying the company of a few good friends or just relaxing in your favorite lawn chair taking in the sun.
Take the time to reevaluate how your department/business operates. Do you take a “top-down approach” where the focus is on the big picture first and upper management has a heavier hand and may set stringent guidelines? Or do you take a “bottom-up approach” where the smaller pieces of the business come first, employees given latitude to adapt to situations at hand and there is a more natural business flow eventually turning towards the “big picture”?
Both approaches work, as long as systems are in place to support them.
Make sure you are prepared for the inevitable time when your employee is tempted to pick up the phone to call you but stops and says “hey, I don’t need to call the boss, I know how to take care of this”.
That’s when you can enjoy your day off, and your employees can enjoy their job because they know you have confidence in them to make the right call…the one that is NOT to you.
Do you hate getting calls at home from work?
Leave a comment below and tell me about it…