Nobody wants to be a clock-watcher, out the door everyday not a minute past 5pm. But the reality is that it's not how long we spend in the office that counts, but what we get done while we're in there.
There’s countless research that points to the harmful effects of working over 40 hours a week. Productivity levels are shattered and regularly working long hours has been linked to heart disease, anxiety and even Alzheimer’s. You might tell yourself that you’re doing more, but in reality - long-term - you’re doing less and harming your health in the process.
So here are a few helpful tips on getting out the door – On. Time.
Share your success:
Be vocal about how much you have got done, within contracted hours. Spending extra hours at work has often been prized because it’s a simple way to measure hard work. By letting your boss know what you’re working on and how much you have completed will counter any need to stay past office hours. Nobody is going to resent a high-performer for leaving on time.
Book something in after work:
Forcing yourself out the door with a booked-in activity is a great way to stick to your timetable. This could be anything from an exercise class, to a catch-up with a friend, or simply the time your groceries are being delivered home. If possible, book an external meeting in the last slot of the working day – it’s much easier to head home when you’re already out of the office. Whatever it is, having somewhere to be ensures you get out of the door.
Prepare to leave:
If you can't bear to be torn away from your desk while it's covered in a stack of paperwork, or the thought of leaving the door with unanswered emails makes you grimace, do whatever you have to get done in order to leave the office.
Lead by example:
If you manage a team, set the standard for increased productivity via work/life balance. If you leave on time, your team will feel at ease to do so also. Equally, if you stay until all hours, you’re setting an example that will likely be followed. Leaving on time isn’t just about doing something for yourself, but for the entire team’s productivity levels.