Don’t forget to unplug occasionally

Mobile technology makes it possible to work productively no matter where the individual might be and more companies than ever before are outfitting their professional workers with the mobile tech gear to make that easier.  The proliferation of BlackBerrys, Smartphones, Tablet PCs, pagers and laptops makes it easier than ever for the professional to stay connected with the office network and work even when away from the office.

InternetNews has an article that looks at the increasing ranks of mobile warriors and points to a study that has some interesting findings about workers who are always connected.

Statistics commissioned by The Conference Board illustrate that overall job satisfaction rates since 1995 have dropped from 60 percent to 50 percent. Of the 50 percent who are satisfied, only 14 percent claim to be "very satisfied" and 25 percent are only showing up to collect a paycheck.

One of the primary drivers of the job dissatisfaction rates cited in the study is rapid technological change.

In the office, workers have the convenience of instant messaging, e-mail, videoconferencing and collaboration tools to make them more efficient. And they take the technologies with them even when the work day ends.

It can lead to an always-connected conundrum, according to work researchers. The very technologies created during the heady early days of the dot-com boom to make our lives easier can become root causes for discontent.

If you are one of the mobile warriors described here that is driven to always do "just one more thing" for work it is important to remember to unplug occasionally.  Burnout is something that creeps up on you and there is no substitute for stepping away from it from time to time.

An interesting observation in the article shows that as corporations have increasingly locked down the use of networks for personal email and web surfing employees have been quick to find workarounds.  Many employees get Smartphones such as the Treo or Windows Mobile based phones that allow personal use without touching corporate resources.  In this case the technology that helps employees work longer hours is leveraged on the personal level to allow on the job down time.