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High income, no time to spend

What's really stopping professionals from spending the big money they earn, wonders Neha Sharma.

entertainment Updated: Oct 17, 2008 19:07 IST
Neha Sharma

They earn fat pay packages, have sleek BlackBerrys, swanky cars and all that spells opulence. But alas, no time to spend the money, flaunt the phone and show off the car. And they would rather have it that way. These are people whose earnings and perks are sky high but they don't have the time to avail these. They skip their breakfast at home to be in office before time, and spend their after work hours in office-working more.

Take Saurabh Raina, GM Sales and Marketing, Ramaprastha Promoters and Developers. The last time he took a holiday was in 2000 when he went to Australia. Since then he has had no time for leisure. The 30-year-old says that his wife and mother have reconciled with his work schedule which leaves no time for outings. "No one is pressurising me to do it. I love my work, I am addicted to it. I reach office at 9 in the morning and I am in till 10 in the night. At times, I also work on Sundays and I don't regret it at all," he says. "I look forward to my day in the office because our projects are so interesting, that I don't feel I am missing out on something," he adds.

25-year-old Rajendra K Bhatt GM Marketing, Academy of Animation & Gaming (AAG) has not visited his family in Nainital since the past two years. He spends 18 hours in office on a day and has no complaints. "I don't find time for leisure. Though I have a fat and satisfactory pay packet, there is no time to spend it. Sometimes. I enter office at 11 in the morning and stay in till 3 in the morning. Once in a blue moon, I catch late night movie with friends."

Seniors hold the increasing ambition among youngsters responsible for this. They say that the art of time management is fading and the new generation of executives can't strike a balance between work and family. Ashwani Prakash, Executive Director, Paramount group says that he has seen youngsters who don't want to go home from office. "One literally has to tell them ghar baar nahi hai kya?. It is essential for youngsters to work, yet do recreational activities," he says.

Experts say that cases of burnt out and depressed corporates have increased three folds in the past five years. They say that the 'hire and fire' policies of most big companies and all the hype around the survival of the fittest are giving sleepless nights to youngsters. Says psychiatrist Jitendra Nagpal, "This is the burnout stress syndrome and most coprorates are suffering from this. Blood pressure, diabetes, smoking mental health problems are on the rise. People are depressed because there is one managerial post and 20 competitors for it.

He further says that competition, accountability and insecurity are the primary reasons people are spending endless hours in office. They want to achieve high posts in their late twenties and that drive is killing their desire for leisure. Their personal lives are also suffering and they don't realise that. Instead they feel that their spouse doesn't understand.

Psychiatrists also say that companies need to look into the rise of lifestyle diseases and instead of spending on treatment, they should look at prevention. "In fact some companies are following the policy of enforcing leave on employees who work for days together without an off. This is very good," says Dr Nagpal.

These workaholics apart, there are some who don't take leave not because they love their work but because they are in awe of the workplace. Says media professional Abhishek Bose who works with PR firm Hanmer & Partners, "The value of a holiday comes to light only when you take it after a really long time. I like my office and colleagues, and get bored if I take an off."

Agrees Desh Raj Sekhri, Director Orient Sports Management, "I have lot of clients abroad and I ma on my blackberry throughout. I sleep at 4 in the morning and I am up at 9. I work all 7 days, I haven't taken a vacation in long time, but I like it this way. I love my work," he says.

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