Small business accounting company Xero recently surveyed 551 business owners at companies with fewer than 20 employees to find out how technology plays a role in their lives.
Many of the findings were surprising. Fifty-eight per cent of respondents said they worked more than 40 hours a week, with around 38 per cent of businesses owners claiming to work fewer than 40 hours per week. Many small business owners claimed that they had no tangible work schedule and sometimes worked more than 55 hours.
However, even with the standard schedules of around 40 hours of work a week, 77 per cent of small business owners said they felt burnt out by work, and only a meagre 23 per cent said they didn’t feel any burnout. The respondents said burnout came in different ways. Around 72 per cent of entrepreneurs who responded reported feeling a lack of energy, and 61 per cent said they dint get enough time to spend with friends and family, while 51 per cent said they were losing motivation.
Not surprisingly, around 51 respondents said they took fewer vacations than before becoming business owners. Twelve per cent of entrepreneurs said they took no holidays during the previous year, and they took a lot less than the national average of 16.8 vacation days.
Most business owners said even when they were on vacation, or away from work, they had trouble staying away from work due to technology that kept them connected. Ninety-five per cent of respondents said they take technology while on vacation to monitor work, and only a meagre 5 per cent said they don’t use technology while on vacation.
Around 83 respondents who said they bring technology and work along to their vacations said they experience work-related stress. This means only 17 per cent of respondents enjoy their vacations without stress. This is also the case with the 85 per cent of respondents who said they worked while on vacation. Forty-one per cent of those said they had friends or family complain that they worked too much during their break.
Entrepreneurs feel a strong connection to their business, so it is not surprising that they want to bring work along even on vacation. However, could it also mean that they don’t trust anyone else to take over their responsibilities while at work? It is high time people realize that while work is very important, taking a stress-free vacation is essential for good health.