Accountants – Go “Off the Grid”
Summer officially begins on the morning of June 21st. I hope everyone reading this is going to be able to enjoy some time away in the next few months. One of the great joys of working for yourself is having the ability to set your own schedule.
This year, we are insisting that our team do absolutely NO WORK when they are on vacation. We have always encouraged people to do this, but the urge to check in or work some (even just a little bit) has proven to be too tempting. We are cracking down.
Why is this a big deal to us? It has taken me personally some time to be able to vacation without working and not feel at least slightly guilty about that. I didn’t take completely unplugged vacation time until a few years ago, and it’s taken me that long to see the real value in doing so. I figure my team can benefit just as much as I have. We look at time-off as an investment that pays off in increased energy, enthusiasm, longevity, and overall job satisfaction. If you (and your team members) are working at all on those days off, then you are not going to reap the full benefits.
Here are 3 reasons to leave your laptop and smart phone at home when you are on vacation:
Going “off the grid” is incredibly rejuvenating.
Email on the phone is a difficult thing to resist. Leaving devices at home, takes the urge away completely. When you are checking your email, mentally you are back at the office. The urge to feel connected to the office might be from a fear that things are not going well, the need to control, or just boredom and habit. Being fully present when on vacation is far more important. Simply change your voicemail greeting, turn on the auto-responder and leave the devices at home. The People in Your Life Deserve No Less- Sometimes a single email or work related phone call can trigger several minutes or even hours of thinking about work. This “traveling in your own mind” pulls you away from your family and friends. There is no need for it. You are spending money on a great vacation; you should enjoy it fully and connect with the most important people in your life.
Accounting Emergencies Only Exist in Your Mind-Enough said!
Most of your clients will be pleased to hear about your vacation when you get back and others on your team can probably handle a lot more than you think. There is no need to “check in with the office.” Leave a phone # with one person in the office along with instructions to call only if they must. Let clients know weeks in advance of time-off so that if there are important issues needing your attention, they will know your schedule.
You’ll Make Giant Leaps In Your Career
The happiest and most successful accounting practice owners that I’ve met over the years all take their time-off seriously. Time off gives you perspective…a chance to see the forest and not just the trees.
Enjoy your summer!
About the author
Brannon Poe, CPA
An author and experienced intermediary specializing in accounting practice sales, mergers and acquisitions, Brannon has efficiently and effectively facilitated hundreds of successful practice transitions. He writes posts to this accounting blog several times per month.