Earlier this month I was interviewed in HR Magazine, published by the Society for Human Resource Management. In addition to covering the basic ideas behind deliberate rest, we get into implications for HR professionals:
What role can HR play to ensure that employees get the rest they need.
Encourage managers and workers to take rest seriously and to recognize that it helps people be more productive than they’ll be if they’re perpetually overworked and stressed.
At the practical level, HR might work with IT to have “blackout” periods, turning off work e-mail and intranet access on select nights and weekends, or blocking out meetings during, say, 9 a.m. to noon, so people have a block of time to focus on critical tasks. They also need to work with management to develop metrics to assess the effectiveness of these new policies. Seeing concrete returns will convince skeptical executives that the policies are worth having and help business leaders better understand that the number of hours people spend in the office is possibly the worst way to measure productivity.
Last week I was in London and Amsterdam, doing press to support the UK and Dutch editions of the book. One of the fun things about the interviews– and there were a LOT of them– is that I talked to people from a wide range of publications, ranging from business magazines, to health and fitness magazines, to magazines for working women. Rest is a big territory, and so you end up talking about different parts of the project, and having quite different kinds of conversations, depending on who you’re talking to.
Update: Interview has been translated into Vietnamese!