All this late night chatter increases stress, decreases sleep, and affects long-term productivity. If you are a client or a boss of someone, you are affecting the stress and sleep of everyone on your cc list when you send them emails at night. A survey put out by Good Technology found that some 80 percent of the 1,000 Americans polled said they spend seven extra hours a week or 30 extra hours a month checking emails and answering phone calls after hours.
Wait until normal business hours to send emails or, if you must write something, don't press "send" until the morning. Monday morning if you're working on the weekend, please.
Consider using project management or communication tools with your team that allow participants to choose when they want to work on something, and take them out of a situation where information is pushed to them and they’re in reaction mode all the time.
Good email behavior results in more productivity and better sleep! One New York real estate executive Ms. Stringer spoke with has banned internal emails and is using new tools like Slack and Asana with his team. Before this ban, he was spending 100 percent of his time in the office just responding to emails – with no time for collaborating, thinking or working on the next project. Using new tools has allowed his team to work on projects in a more streamlined fashion, without a lot of back-and-forth, saving stress and time. He claims to have recaptured at least five hours a week and saved "a day" of his team's time a week due to more efficient communication and streamlined meetings.
As technology has evolved and more and more work is completed using computers, many workers have found themselves in sedentary office jobs. Leigh Stringer, author of "The Healthy Workplace," says it's not that we aren't working hard, but that "what our minds and bodies need at a basic level is in conflict with our work style. We are so focused on work, on getting things done, that we've changed the way we eat, move and sleep in a way that is actually counter-productive."
According to Stringer, taking care of worker health and wellbeing is one of the most effective ways to increase employee productivity and engagement. As an example, think back to a night when you got a full night's sleep and compare that to a night when you stayed out a bit too late with friends. How did you feel the morning after your night with friends? Probably not bright-eyed and bushy tailed, ready to take on the challenges of the day. It's important to put your health first, as everything hinges on that baseline.
So what are some of those unhealthy habits that we need to break? In this slideshow, Ms. Stringer offers up a comprehensive list of the "don'ts," with suggestions on what to do instead.