He has permanent shoulder damage from being a little league pitcher. There is such a build up of scar tissue in his right shoulder that his right hand is colder than his left because of the lack of circulation. My husband’s going to be 29 this month and he’s still feeling the effects of an overworked arm from pitching in little league over 20 years ago.
What are your most valuable assets in your business? Is it your creative brain? Is it your employees? Is it something that wasn’t meant to be run like a machine? I’ve often heard businesses say that their employees are their most valuable assets. I worked at a firm that truly believed it, since all their profits came from billable hours. However, instead of creating a sustainable, healthy environment in which their employees could bill hours long-term, the company ran their people ragged. This article (beware of explicit language) clearly showcases what I was observing in the culture at this firm. The environment wasn’t one of healthy, sustainable living. It was dehumanizing and above all, profit-focused.
Overworking your assets may cause permanent damage. In the case of employees, they will never get that time back that they’ve given up. They are aware that they are sacrificing their lives right now for the hope of something greater in the future. But when the future comes, they know they won’t get the past back. Just like my husband lost the chance to pitch long-term, you lose part of your life to your overworked hours - permanently removing that time from your life.
Overworking people also incites terrible physical health, mental health and overall productivity. You want your business to be a place that your employees praise. A place you can be proud you ran when your life is said and done. You don’t want to regret using your employees like machines to generate as much profit as fast as possible. You don’t want to regret that you went through employees like paper towels.
And what about you? You know that time is your most valuable resource. Are you overworking because you're stressed? Submitting to the stress, instead of saying no to it, and overworking doesn't help you solve your problems. Give up the stress. Give up the overworking. It causes permanent damage - because you can never get that time back.
Concise, quality articles on why overworking employees and yourself is bad for your business and you:
- 3 Reasons Why You Shouldn't Overwork Your Employees by AIM
- Overworked Employees - Kills More than Productivity by Sean Conrad
- How Being Overworked Hurts Your Health by Sarah Brooks