Replace Balance with Blend: Improved Time Management for Consultants

Do you have “work-life balance?”

The definition of “normal job hours” has drastically changed over the years, especially in today’s fast-paced and demanding business culture (when was the last time you heard someone having a good ole’ 9-5 work schedule?). That notion has become even further distant in the life of a consultant. You know what I mean, right?  Those early morning e-mails and late night phone calls sound familiar? With that said, work and dedication to providing high-quality solutions and service for our clients do not always stop for the nights, weekends, or even vacations (depending on the client). This not only affects you as an individual, but can also affect everyone around you…

Let’s introduce the idea of “work-life blend”
“Work-life blend” can be thought of as not necessarily having to separate “work” and “life” since, in most cases, it may seem nearly impossible to do so. By setting the expectations of a “work-life blend” upfront with both yourself and your loved ones, you can begin to prioritize your busy and demanding schedule/tasks and make the most of both your professional and personal lives. Some people like to keep business and pleasure separate; however, while I understand it may not fit everyone’s lifestyle, I have found that building a personal connection with my colleagues outside of a professional setting helps to build better chemistry at work.

Of course, this “work-life blend” concept will probably not work for everyone, but if it has not crossed your mind before, I encourage you all to try it and give me some of your feedback.

Here are some other ideas to try that may improve your time management as a consultant:

  • If it is an option, and you have established your client’s trust, occasionally work from home. The time saved from commuting is a bonus.
  • Last, but not least… every once in a while, take a “non-consultant” type vacation. Leave your laptop at home!

What kinds of balances, blends, or other ideas have worked for you as a consultant? Leave your feedback below. 

Phone: 312-602-4000
222 W. Adams
Chicago, IL 60606
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