New survey shows millennials desperate to switch off

Time off from the phone

Despite growing up in the digital age, millennial business owners are the most likely to want more time offline this summer.

A national survey of small business owners has found that 73% of 25-34 year olds would like more time unconnected, compared with 53% of 45-54 year olds and 40% of over 55s who would like this.

Similarly, a quarter of all 25-34s are very concerned about the amount of time spent with phone and email access, compared with 18% of 35-44s and only 9% of 45-54s.

Dropping the balls

The survey suggests that millennials are more proactive than their older work colleagues in trying to spend time unconnected from work: 38% of 25-34s compared with 21% of 45-54s. However, they are also more likely than older business owners to worry about possible consequences of switching off: only 9% of 25-34s said they had no worries about disconnecting, compared with 40% of 45-54s who said they weren’t worried about switching off.

Say ‘I’m not in…’

The survey showed some interesting trends emerging across all age groups. In a bid to take control of communications, the survey showed that across the board business owners are frequently ignoring certain calls, with 28% ignoring calls from clients and 56% ignoring calls from friends and family.

It also showed business owners worry that by switching off they might miss customers (22%), admin will pile up (21%) and they might be responsible if something goes wrong while they are unconnected (11%).

Lawyers at leisure

The study also revealed some interesting differences across different industry sectors, with those in the legal sector being more likely to deliberately spend time unconnected: 67%, compared to 30% of those in sales and marketing for example.

Commenting on the survey results, Joanna Swash, Managing Director of Moneypenny said: “It’s really interesting that those who grew up with the digital revolution are the ones most likely to want to release themselves from the ‘always on’ work culture, but at the same time they worry about what might happen if they do disconnect. Fortunately there are a whole wealth of solutions available to ensure business keeps working during the holidays, from Virtual Receptionists to automated answering systems, so there’s no reason to be taking calls from the sun lounger.”