When you first get into the HR game, your friends and family will probably assume your job is all about ensuring your employees work as hard as possible for as long as possible for the good of your employer.
It doesn’t take long to figure that treating HR like factory maintenance is not good for your business’s employees or for your business. Well-rested, healthy, happy workers are more productive and creative than those who are forced or force themselves into overwork, keeping long hours and then taking their work home with them, too.
Putting people first
There’s more and more evidence that putting your employees ahead of your business will benefit everyone the best. Ultimately, we’re here on Earth to be happy, not to make money; and a human workforce that is treated like humans is more likely to be engaged and accountable than staff that grow to resent their every moment in the office.
So you’ll have told those family and friends who misunderstood your job that actually a great deal of what you do is about helping your employees to cope with and enjoy their work, rather than to work longer and harder. But what many HR professionals still manage to overlook is that work has a tendency to spread beyond the office walls and hours – especially in today’s climate of connectivity.
One of the most powerful ways an HR pro can support their team these days is to guide them in managing their own time away from work. And one of the keys is to be able to switch off not just their internet connection, but their whole work mind for hours or days at a time.
This new resource from CashNetUSA offers several very workable tips on how to stop thinking about work after work hours. It’s worth sharing it with your team, but also taking on some of the ideas yourself.
‘Logging off’ rituals in the workplace
That mental ‘logging-off’ process begins in the office, where a healthy end-of-day ritual can help establish that staff are leaving the worries of work behind.
Such rituals might be something you do together as a team (such as an end-of-day round-up) if you all finish at the same time; or it might be more guided towards suggesting that workers develop their own ritual, such as closing down electronics fully, changing their clothes, or powering up the music on their smart phone before they leave the office.
Relaxing rituals in the home
But you can encourage them to develop healthier home rituals, too. Enquire as to their interests when holding appraisals and be positive about their ideas and dreams, whether that means going out for long walks or starting work on that novel. All too many of us end up slouching on the couch on evenings and weekends, our work shirts unbuttoned at the top, never quite shaking off that office feeling and letting our sleep and health suffer as a result.
So next time your mom asks you how much money you’re saving your business with efficiency schemes and strict discipline, be sure to point out that your job is about humans, not resources!
How to stop thinking about work after hours – InfographicJohn Cole writes on behalf of NeoMam Studios. A digital nomad specializing in leadership, digital media, and pets, his passions include world cinema and biscuits. A native Englishman, he is always on the move, but can most commonly be spotted in the UK, Norway, and the Balkans.

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