Every year, studies show that Americans are overworked compared to our European counterparts. U.S. workers average just 13 days’ vacation a year, according to a recent study by Expedia. Some European countries enjoy three times as many days off. During the holiday season, this difference between U.S. and European workers widens.
Most small-business owners do not intend to spend the holiday season meditating on a beach in Thailand, according to a study sponsored by RingCentral, the cloud-based telephone company. Instead, they plan to spend the time working. The study indicates that only 14 percent of business owners will take a traditional vacation.
Most small-business owners feel they can’t afford to take the time away from their businesses. Some have reduced their workforce to adjust to current economic conditions. Others need to compensate for a weak sales year by trying to close some final deals in what remains of 2011. Taking advantage of opportunities, even during the holidays, is part of owning your own business.
If you are one of the businesses that plan to leverage opportunities during the holiday season, can you take at least a partial break? The answer is yes.
The RingCentral survey indicates that 73 percent of business owners are getting creative to give themselves and their teams some downtime while still attending to their office duties.
Mobile technology is one way to get a break without neglecting opportunities at the office. See if any of these tools might help you.
This mobile application allows users to view and edit Microsoft Word and Excel files on a mobile device. Business owners can review contracts, edit memos, make corrections to proposals and revise budgets directly from their smartphone or tablet. For less than $10, this great tool lets you be productive away from the office during the holidays. It's available on both Apple and Android platforms.
Using LogMeIn Ignition, you can access your work computer directly from your mobile device. The app works with both Mac and PC computers, allowing you to access files and run Salesforce and Office remotely. You can configure LogMeIn to work with multiple computers, giving you access to home and office units. At $30, this app is only available for Android devices.
Monitor, activate and deactivate your office-alarm system directly from your mobile device. Alarm.com's EmPower solution monitors energy consumption while you’re away. You can also set it up to see when your business opens and closes, making sure that employees are managing things well while you’re gone.
Here are the key results of the RingCentral study.