You don’t have to work 60-hour weeks to be successful.

My niece quit her job because she couldn’t handle the 60-hour workweeks while raising a family. She was stressed, had a short fuse, and didn’t smile much. I was getting increasingly worried about her health and was relieved when she quit.

Sure, it was scary for her family for a while. One income was suddenly gone. But there’s always a silver lining to unemployment. For me, getting fired helped launch my referral business. For my niece, quitting was an opportunity to find a job she loves. Now she works 8:00 to 5:00, and she smiles a whole lot. Her boss has kids, and he understands when she needs to take time off.

My niece isn’t alone. More and more people are leaving their corporate jobs—and it’s not just women. In 2019, workers quit at an unprecedented rate, and employee disengagement was at an all-time high.

Why are talented workers so unhappy at work? One reason is that our pace is too frenetic. It’s way faster to send a text or email than to make a phone call or schedule a lunch meeting. We don’t take time to nurture our relationships, and all that digital communication leaves us feeling disconnected.

We feel out of sorts, and we are. We’ve lost the personal side of business, and it’s taking a toll on sales and employee satisfaction. Even in the digital age, relationships rule. Without that personal touch, we might as well be bots.

Geoff Ables explores the need for human connections in business in his post, “5 Rules for Business Relationships in the Digital Workplace.” He writes, “Today organizations are investing billions of dollars into technology—but that’s not the biggest problem.  Relationship processes are different than other business processes, and they require a unique combination of flexibility and rigidity.  Technology investments, without leadership that embraces a new way of leading, is like a car without a driver—it causes more harm than good.”

Read Geoff’s post for more on how to create a workplace culture that fosters connection. And to learn how to turn relationships into referrals, read my book, Pick Up the Damn Phone!: How People, Not Technology, Seal the Deal.

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