When you are never off you are always on. Personal time merges with work time and it becomes increasingly hard to separate one from the other.
From a corporate perspective, isn’t this the ideal situation?
An organization benefits by getting more work out of an employee. The downside is that employee morale and motivation could suffer over time. Once a customer becomes accustomed to a high level of service it may be difficult to pull back.
From an employee’s point of view a person may work more because a supervisor expects this, the customers demand it, or the corporation (possibly) compensates her for the extra effort.
What happens when you remove communications technology from the equation? Being always on becomes much more difficult. Are removing messaging apps, email, or smartphones part of the solution to having more definition between when people are on and off? Possibly.
A more effective solution would be for a corporation—one that is truly interested in its people—to help set the right expectations internally and with its customers on when people are available to provide a service.
In the same way that technology reduces friction in communications between people, perhaps there’s a way for it to be used to slow things down. It would also be useful for a person to decide what’s most important to them.