ShiftZen Technologies

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Put Sleep in Your Business Plan

The NRA show is going on in Chicago right now. ShiftZen is not attending as we are busy working on new features (like a time clock!), but it sounds like some protesters of minimum wage are in the Windy City. Media master Arianna Huffington had her keynote discussion interrupted by protesters advocating a higher minimum wage. This and tipping have often been posts here at the ShiftZen blog. While there are many interesting subjects to talk about here, I really find Ms. Huffington's discussion of overworking and sleep deprivation captivating and relevant to us (hospitality and technology). Apparently she collapsed from exhaustion about 8 years ago and woke up in a pool of blood. This event made her question the price of success. She was quoted:

We still see people congratulating employees for working 24/7, which is the cognitive equivalent of coming to work drunk

Throughout my career I've seen this first hand. The restaurant manager working an event filled weekend who is making horrible decisions by Sunday afternoon cause they can hardly think after 20 hour days Thursday-Sunday. Quite often, they don't even have to do this, but they want to make a good impression. That shouldn't actually be a good impression, its irresponsible, but society isn't enforcing that. This often happens in the tech business as well. I fell into the trap for a while myself. Going to bed at midnight and then up at 4 am to pick up where I left off. Looking back, I'm not sure it was a good game plan and it certainly isn't the way we do business now. Sure, sometimes we have to work a bit on a weekend and sometimes we are testing code at midnight. But, then you sleep, and you come into work late.  Huffington pointed out that 75% of healthcare costs are a result of diseases related to stress. I'm not able to verify that number, but even if it's half that it's too much. So, when you are putting together your business plan for opening a new restaurant or growth, make sure you have sleep and health written in! It'll save you money in the long run (and maybe your life).