...or any smart phone, for that matter.
Email is the #1 reason (the only reason) I dislike having a smart phone. Why, you ask? Because as long as people know I have an iPhone, they know I'm always within reach. It's as instant as texting. This is particularly true when it comes to work.
I work 20 hours a week in an office--4 hours a day. I'd say that my job comes with quite a bit of responsibility. I'd even say that it should probably be a full-time (but low-paying) job. In fact, I'm treated like a full-time employee. Not so much while I'm at work...but when I'm not there. I begin receiving work-related emails as early as 7am and they keep coming until 11pm or after.
These aren't just those annoying forwards from coworkers. These are "to-do's" from my supervisor. "Did you remember to do this?" "Please take care of this asap." Things like that. Why am I annoyed?
First of all, I'm an hourly employee. Growing up in a UAW family, I learned early in life that "work stays at work." Unlike some of my fellow grad students, I don't like blending my work and social lives. When I'm not at work, I. will. not. work. (And that's because I have papers to write, graduation exams to study for, projects, an internship, jobs to apply for [hire me], finding a place to live after graduation. Oh...and maintaining my health.)
Secondly, my supervisor knows that I have an iPhone and that I'll see the email as soon as it's sent...which means I have to respond immediately. So I'm annoyed that it was sent...and again because I have to respond.
...So if you're a supervisor...
DO NOT EMAIL YOUR HOURLY EMPLOYEES WITH WORK WHEN THEY'RE NOT AT WORK.
But on a more serious note, let me ask you:
I know industry professionals read this. I want your feedback. Do you email your employees after hours? How do you negotiate those boundaries?