Thursday, April 11, 2013

Work vs. play vs. email

Feelancers need to weigh the pros and cons of being out of seems  that opportunities and client requests abound the minute you click non-refundable ticket or when your phone is off.

 I considered flying in and out the same day for a work-related event in New York.  But how could I not see a show? Or two? So I decided to go for a few days, including a day and a half of the work week.

(Pippin is extraordinary, one of the best shows I've ever seen.  And I've seen quite a few.  IMO, better than the original in many ways.  (Though I doubt anyone could surpass Ben Vereen.)  One number got a standing the middle of the show.  And I predict a Tony for Best Choreography--literally jaw droppingly good. Maybe costumes, too. As a Nathan Lane fan, The Nance made the top of the list over Tom Hanks, Bette Midler and other current Broadway stars.)

Because of a full itinerary and exhaustion after so much walking, we didn't stay as connected to email and FB as usual.  I have my phone set up with different notifications for different email addresses, so I know which tones require faster responses.  Hmm. A little like Pavlov's dogs. Even for one day, it felt both freeing and weird to not hear those tones and grab the phone whenever a work-related email came in.

But is it a good idea to spend even one day away from your phone?  For example, a client who was supposed to send a script the week before sent it late afternoon that one, jam-packed weekday I didn't check email every hour or so.  Of course. They sent a follow-up email when I happened to be on the plane home (which had been delayed, so I didn't see it right away).  They also called in the cab from the airport, but I returned that within 16 minutes.  I responded in less than 24 hours from the first email, but because of the now-shorter turnaround time owing to the late script, they were a little concerned that I hadn't gotten back to them ASAP.  And a friend in transit got three calls and two emails about scheduling an on camera audition.       

The next time I travel, I'll either check in more frequently or see if my email has an out of office auto-responder.

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