Nov 222006

Always On is Too Much On

Always On is Too Much On

Among other things last week travelling abroad for work, I learned another good CEO lesson — sometimes it’s ok, even good, to be a bit out of touch. 

Don’t get me wrong.  I’m Always On at the office, while travelling in the US, and usually at home and on weekends as well.  And as I’ve said before in various postings (here, here, here, and definitely here), it’s great to completely unplug at least once a year for a peaceful vacation with friends & family.

But last week was a nice lesson in the middle ground.  I had an international cell phone that people at work didn’t seem to want to call, so they could in an emergency, but no one did for routine things.  I was 5-8 hours off on time zones, so people didn’t think to reach out.  I did email once or twice a day when time permitted, so I stayed in good touch, but I wasn’t grinding out email responses on my Treo every time I took a deep breath.

And the company was fine.  As far as I could tell, sales were even up, so maybe I should semi-disappear more often!