Leadership

CEO to CEO: Tech Vacation

By /
Jun 2, 2019

When you’re on vacation, how do you manage the time you spend on your tech devices?

Kathleen Wilson, CAE

Executive Director, National Association of Trial Lawyer Executives, Tallahassee, Florida

Vacations are essential if we’re to remain productive, creative, and healthy. Also, science has shown that too much digital time is unhealthy. Before leaving for a vacation, I make sure that the most important people who might need to reach me in an urgent situation will call me—no email or texting allowed. That gives me peace of mind, knowing that email and text messages can wait until I’m back at my desk.

Craig Johns

Executive Director, Triathlon ACT, Canberra, Australia

I am very conscious of being present with those I am on vacation with, and I aim to free my mind. I turn my iPhone off and only open it once per day to check personal emails and social media. Work emails are off limits, and the out-of-office message is turned on.

Stacy Tetschner, FASAE, CAE

President and CEO, United Motorcoach Association, Alexandria, Virginia

I set aside time at the beginning and end of each day for email review and response. My team knows to text me if there is anything urgent that needs my immediate attention. Then, I’m free to focus on my family and relaxing.

Gladys Quinto Marrone, CAE

CEO, Building Industry Association of Hawaii, Waipahu, Hawaii

I didn’t take any vacation during my first two years as CEO. On my first real vacation, I brought my laptop. Slowly, I’ve been reducing the amount of time I spend on work, and I encourage my team to follow suit. Now, I only bring my phone on vacation and limit reviewing emails to once a day, responding only if necessary. Preparation and clear direction are key to a more enjoyable vacation.

(Illustrations by Monica Hellström)

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