Work-Life balance. The pinnacle of goals for all working adults. Whether it be at manager level, CEO level or entry level, when it comes to switching off and "leaving work at the office" there isn't any task more important.
Okay I don't mean this literally. If I was to answer the question what is the final task I do at night and the first in the morning both would involve a mac book and at night its closing it and in the morning it's opening it- that's the stark reality of CEO life. Social Media and technology have changed the way we handle our workload. 20 years ago people couldn't contact you outside of the time you were in your workplace. Enter mobile phone and email and suddenly you were able to be contacted 24/7 but whether you chose to carry your mobile or check your email was up to you. Social Media entered the fray 5 years ago and all of a sudden you are accessible 24 hours a day 7 days a week via a variety avenues and in reality, you can not hide. Working 24/7 doesn't mean you are digging holes all day, serving customers all night or on site of your workplace too all hours. Working 24/7 is the modern analogy for you can contact me anytime on Facebook and I will reply because I want to be seen as helpful, industry leading and more importantly I want the customer to feel I care about there goals no matter when or how.
The Stresses of CEO Life in the Modern Day
The most important part of being a CEO is acknowledging you are that person no matter where you are. You can be out for dinner with your family but you still wear your businesses reputation no matter where you go. I use as an example an incident in my home town of Port Pirie, South Australia with a population of 14000 people. We have our own council office with it's own CEO. This person attended a local takeaway and was forced to wait 10 minutes to which he and his partner thought twitter was an appropriate place to vent frustration and warn patrons away from the takeaway.. The CEO whose wage is paid by the rates of that business (not solely) was telling people to not support a local, family owned business. The result? He was undoubtedly slammed for his comments but more importantly the entire council came under fire because even though it isn't directly council related, he is the face of council in Port Pirie. I find the biggest stress is conducting myself to the highest standard all day, everyday. Not because I want to rebel, not because I am immature but because I am human and I have flaws and those flaws are my own but I am Supps Is Life, my behavior is a direct correlation of my businesses stature. Then we move onto the everyday stresses a CEO faces- invoices, marketing, customer relations, employees, wages etc etc and I am talking small scale business. No matter who or what you have in place the final straw lands with you and decisions you make can determine how successful your business is or how successful an employees life can be. My personality is quite an outgoing, happy go lucky, don' t take life too seriously kind of guy. My personal social media accounts will show this side of me and it probably is the lesson I haven't learnt well and need to work on. I need to be aware what I engage in with social media as once again I am the direct link to my business as are your social media accounts. Employers are on to social media like you wouldn't believe- the ability for a tweet, status or comment to take off like haywire is too big of a risk for most business- be aware of who or what might be seen on your social media.
Switching Off- Enjoy Family and Social Events
If you have a phone (and we all do) you have an outlet to work 24/7. Another part of my life I don't do well is family time and social events and forgetting work. Last week our Instagram was hacked, I attended my good mates 32nd birthday dinner and spent the whole time on my phone dealing with getting it restored and in this case it was something that had to be done. I am lucky enough to have a mate who understands the situation and he didn't take it to heart. Those times will happen, that's life, that's business. I am the proud father of a 21 month year old boy, Campbell. I don't get a lot of time to see him in the day so my mornings and evenings are important to ensure I spend them with him and the reality here is I fail 90% of the time- I am busy replying to emails, liaising with my team on Facebook chat or completing the seemingly never ending task of web development. Realistically none of these tasks are of that higher importance that they can't wait 1 hour whilst I spend time with my family. Family is there to be enjoyed and kids are there to loved and I do deep down accept that I have missed times to spend time with Campbell away from my business life. I am a big lover of sport and I love to be involved in it. I currently don't play any sport and I miss that interaction and competitive nature sport brings with it. Finding yourself 1 hour a day for you and 1 hour a day for your family is achievable and its a great starting point. There are some great apps and programs around that help automate certain tasks and finding these tools will help you free up more time for family, friends and events. Sometimes you just have to put your phone on silent and let the world do it's thing and more importantly for your own mental health and stability allow you to enjoy a life where you get to be you and make relationships and memories along the way. A very dear person close to my heart once said " When you are gone all you have are memories, you can't take your possessions or money with you so make sure you make memories to take with you".... No better to advice to leave you with.