As Veracity Technologies grows, I sometimes struggle to avoid it taking up all of my free time. When I worked in the corporate world, I would average a 45-50 hour work-week. During crunch times, it often stretched to 55 hours/week and over some weekends. Owning a start-up is different. It is a big part of what I do 7 days a week. I am blessed that my husband is supportive of my endeavors! It’s good to be able to bounce ideas off of someone who has a vested interest!
Back in 2010, I wrote an article entitled Business and Family. In there, I stated our ground rules for trying to balance things out. I wanted to give you a progress report and to see how you’ve made changes.
Mealtimes are for family. Blackberries, PDAs, etc are not allowed at the table. We purchased an advanced home phone system (VTech C56429-4 DECT 6 Cordless Phone System) that allows our cell phones to bind to our home phone via Bluetooth. The advantage is that the cell phones stay on the clutter counter and not on the table. We can mute them and let them go to voicemail. Plus, if we really need to answer that call we can via the home phone. I will admit that the times we pick up the phone during a meal is when the caller ID indicates that its one of our parents. And this has helped cut down on interruptions!
Scheduling is important for the business side and for the family. In mid-2010, I switched Veracity to Google Apps for Business and switched to an Android phone. That allowed me to easily schedule and keep up with appointments and tasks. My husband has an account on the system so he can easily look at my calendar. It’s worked out nicely and I highly recommend doing a trial with Google Apps.
Vacations are just that… a vacation from the day-to-day. That first vacation in 2010 was tough. Everywhere we found Wi-Fi, I was checking email; making site updates for clients; working on business plans; and, everything else but enjoying the time away. I couldn’t let go. In 2011, it got a bit better. I found a couple of highly technical friends that I could depend on to cover urgent client issues. Last year, in 2012, I felt much more confident letting someone else handle the day to day issues. When one of our hosting providers had a major outage, he was on it and handled it in a most awesome manner! And finally, but most important…
Financial plans and business plans are transparent. This is really a no brainer. My husband and I discuss project estimates, cash flow, receivables, and expenditures. As an LLC we know it hits our personal bottom line, so we are deeply engaged in this aspect of the business.
If I were to grade my work-life balance, I would have to say I’m a solid “B.” I still struggle with letting go during vacations, but I am getting better! Leave me a note and let me know how you fare in your own work-life balance.