Happy after work hours
The mad frenzy of deadlines, deliverables and targets at work coupled with long commuting hours are leaving very little time for corporate executives - particularly those in metropolitan cities - to party.business Updated: Aug 20, 2012 22:27 IST
The mad frenzy of deadlines, deliverables and targets at work coupled with long commuting hours are leaving very little time for corporate executives - particularly those in metropolitan cities - to party. Besides, there are expectations from family members to spend quality 'together time' at home. Consequently, today the average office-goer is increasingly concerned about having his/her daily quota of relaxation and 'me-time'.
"After finishing a hard day's work that can sometimes stretch well beyond the stipulated hours, most people simply do not have the energy to tap their feet to adrenalin- pumping beats in a discotheque or at a party. It is hence only natural that people in high-pressure jobs are resorting to quieter pastimes to rewind after work hours," says Radha Sandhu, a Gurgaon-based psychological counsellor and wellness therapist.
Following the train of thought, Vikram Kalia, general manager - products (peripherals and PC), Intex Technologies says, "My work hours stretch endlessly and the traffic compounds my travel time. So, in order to keep myself upbeat and relaxed, I focus on simple things like listening to music while in the car. I rely a lot on meditation as well and no day goes without the mandatory half-hour of meditation time." Kalia reiterates the importance of spending quality time with family. "My son is my biggest stress buster and I love spending time playing video games with him," he adds.
Shwetank Singh, vice president, operations, Premier Inn, South Asia, is no different. "I love to teach something new to my little son every day and never miss out on my daily yoga for which I wake up every morning at 4.30." Sandhu says, "An interesting fact is that today the after-work pastimes of men and women are not much different. There are a number of men who unwind by cooking and by beautifying their homes while an increasing number of women destress through exercise and sports." Sharad Mehra, chief executive officer, Pearl Academy, echoes this observation and says "I love to cook in my spare time."
Most high-profile executives agree that weekends mean stretching the canvas of fun and letting one's hair down. Sports, hobbies and travel score high on the weekend agenda. "I love travelling to historical places and Udaipur is one of my favourite cities, so you'll find me visiting the city where long weekends are concerned," says Mehra. Eating out and watching movies are common pastimes. "According to Sandhu, the patterns of unwinding after office are largely determined by two things - the city in which one lives and one's age and organisational profile."
Talking about the latter factor, Kinshuk De, business head - security and niche technology delivery, Tata Consultancy Services, says, "Unwinding after office can mean different things for different age groups and different strata of executives. For instance, in my younger days, my time after work was invested in relationships, girlfriends, movies, pubs and discs. Needless to say, this has significantly changed after I got married and fathered two kids. Today, unwinding primarily means a beer or two with friends, live theatre on a terrace, gossiping, networking (including on Facebook), a gala dinner at the club or five-star hotels. Also I look forward to international business trips as they help in breaking the monotony."
On the city factor, Sandhu says, "Delhi definitely offers a huge variety in terms of recreation avenues. For the artistically inclined, there are galleries, for the history lovers there are museums and monuments while for the connoisseurs of theatre, dance and drama the auditoriums are routinely abuzz with various festivals and shows."