Weekend? What weekend?
If you work a typical Mon-Fri, 9-5 type of job, realizing that you have to work on a weekend can be a real bummer. (Of course, if you are a member of the “gig economy”, an entrepreneur, a freelancer, or the like – you are used to working weekends. And in the middle of the night. And pretty much 24/7. ).
A necessary evil to get the job done
It recently happened to me – a project REALLY needed finishing, and the only way to get it done was to steal some free time from a Saturday. Was I dreading it? Yup. Not the work itself – I had no problem with the task at hand – but the giving up of free time. After spending a full 8 hours in the office on a Saturday, though, it turned out it wasn’t so bad at all. Why, you ask?
5 ways to make weekend work more enjoyable (or, at least, suck less)
Involve the team
There is something special about a group of people working together on the same goal; it just seems less stressful to know that “we’re all in this together” and you aren’t out there all alone trying to get something done. Many hands not only make light work (isn’t that what your grandma used to say?) but they also help a whole lot with bonding.
And by the team, I also mean THE BOSS. Seeing the boss roll up his/her own sleeves and get down in the trenches with the rest of the staff to get ‘er done, on their own weekend, goes a long way toward making the experience more pleasant.
Here’s the thing. It can be really hard for everyone on a project to focus on the same thing at the same time during during the regular work week. What with meetings, and phone calls, and voicemails, and emails, and lunch breaks, and coffee breaks, and informal conversations, and questions … my god, it’s distractions, distractions everywhere! No matter how much everyone tries to concentrate on the joint task at hand, there isn’t always enough time during office hours.
On a weekend though, those distractions are removed. 1 project, 1 task, 1 goal. Laser-like focus without the guilt nor obligation of getting the rest of the work done. It's kind of amazing what you can get done in a day when you don't have a multitude of issues competing for your attention.
You know, meaning that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Often, we lose sight of the big picture when working on our own little piece of the puzzle; it can, at times, feel like we have blinders on.
Getting a bunch of the gang together to work on the same big picture objective, though, can work wonders at removing those blinders. Each member can see the impact of his or her individual contributions on the end result. And you know what that usually means – it often means increased motivation!
Feed the team
On a literal level, bring in food. If your team is going to give up some personal time, making sure they have fuel for their bodies is a nice touch that will be appreciated by all.
A yummy lunch is great and I’m certainly not one to discount the effect a grande skinny vanilla latte can have on a weekend worker … but you know what is even better? Feeding not just the body with some fuel, but feeding the soul and the emotions, too. Light! Music! Laughter! Gratitude! Comfortable environment!
Keep it occasional
This has to be a relatively rare occurrence. If it were to happen every.single.weekend … the motivation would be very quickly lost. People need balance in their lives – they need time off to recharge, regroup, reenergize. And that means time off from work.
If coming in on an occasional Saturday to work on a special project during crunch time beins to morph into coming in every Saturday as par for the course, then it’s just a short path to making it like every other workday – complete with the distractions and the juggling priorities.
Which means working on Sunday wouldn’t be far behind. And that would really suck.
You know what doesn't suck? Working with me! Reach out and see!