While 97 percent of the UK’s business community send work-related emails outside of the “nine-to-five” working week, there is evidence that this ‘‘always on” approach is having a positive effect on people’s work and personal lives, according to research by global advertising agency gyro in association with Forbes.
Often driven by career ambition over fear, the “always on” state of mind better suits the busy lives of those surveyed, 41 percent of whom were involved in the marketing decision making process. A third (32 percent) of respondents say they check their work emails every one or two hours and over half (52 percent) would happily step away from a family occasion (such as a dinner) to deal with a business issue.
Nevertheless, they feel in control to be able to enjoy their free time, with only 15 percent saying they struggle to separate work from valuable personal/family time and 84 percent feeling better prepared and empowered to make highly commercial business decisions due to a welcome and constant stream of information.
The findings demonstrate that people no longer feel rushed to make business decisions within the constraints of “9 to5” and instead value the freedom of flexibility that “always on” allows. The study also found that:
• Nearly half (49 percent) cite personal values as an influence in their decision-making
• Almost half (49 percent) feel more productive and better enabled to perform when blending work with personal time
• Over half (57 percent) of all business decisions are made at home
• And 62 percent said that they make better business decisions because they have more time to think clearly
According to Christoph Becker, gyro global chief executive and creative officer: “Our research challenges the perception that people are unable to juggle busy working lives with personal time. In fact UK decision makers are blending work and personal time effectively to make better business decisions, free from the shackles of the ticking clock.”