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Three ways to avoid overworking yourself


Friday, 22nd November 2019 at 4:45 pm
Maggie Coggan
We’ve all been there. The clock hits five and you should be heading out the door to go home, but that unfinished pile of work is glaring up at you. But how can you stop this from becoming the regular? With last Wednesday being national Go Home On Time Day, we thought it was time to find out. 


Friday, 22nd November 2019
at 4:45 pm
Maggie Coggan


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Three ways to avoid overworking yourself
Friday, 22nd November 2019 at 4:45 pm

We’ve all been there. The clock hits five and you should be heading out the door to go home, but that unfinished pile of work is glaring up at you. But how can you stop this from becoming the regular? With last Wednesday being national Go Home On Time Day, we thought it was time to find out. 

For those working in the resource-scarce NFP sector, staying back late or taking home work can be quite a normal part of your job, but according to Richard Green, the CEO of NGO Recruitment, that doesn’t mean you should put up with it.

Communication is key 

If you’re in a job where your average working day is 12 hours or more, it might be time to have a chat with your manager about it, because the constant pressure is not sustainable. 

“Open communication with your managers on what their expectations are and what you can actually manage is important,” he says. 

“If a manager tells you they can’t afford another person to do the job, you need to hold your ground and tell them how you’re feeling because that’s when you can get feedback and figure something out.” 

Listen to your loved ones 

Sometimes your loved ones know you better than you do, and if they are starting to notice that you’re struggling, it might be time to pull back a little and take a break from work.   

“I think it’s just reading the signs and listening to people who love you saying ‘I think you’re working too hard’ or ‘you’re so obsessed with that organisation’,” he says. 

“It’s about being able to identify if it’s a problem or not.” 

Start a culture shift 

If working overtime is firmly indented in the culture of your organisation, it’ll be harder to stop yourself from staying back into the night. Green suggests raising this with senior staff to try and start a culture shift. 

“If the leadership and management don’t have checks and balances in place there is the chance they unknowingly take advantage of that commitment and dedication from their staff,” he says. 

“Because if they get the value of two people out of one person they are saving money to put into the cause, which is great, but you can’t do that to anybody’s detriment.”


Maggie Coggan  |  Journalist  |  @MaggieCoggan

Maggie Coggan is a journalist at Pro Bono News covering the social sector.


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