Custom Application Development

Nov 30 2008   8:46PM GMT

Weekends and the Independent Developer

SJC SJC Profile: SJC

There’s an old saying that goes something like “There is no rest for the weary!” to which I have been known to rephrase to “There is no rest for the independent developer!”.  The intro to my blog states “This blog deals with the questions and challenges of providing users with quality “custom” software programs…”, and over the past 15 months of writing this blog I’ve worked hard to stay at least somewhat on-target with that stated objective.  This weekend has actually made it easy for me to write my last blog post for this month — having provided me much in the way of “subject matter” to substantiate my “There is no rest …” statement(s) earlier.

This has been a weekend filled with activity for me — and opportunity to correspond via email(s) with clients for whom I’m working.  Now, while I have had plenty of communication with said clients, the good news is that because all of the communication has been via email, it has truly been un-obtrusive and no threat to my efforts in creating a work-life balance that works for me.  In each case, the issues communicated have not been of a nature requiring an immediate response — hence they have not been disruptive.

Truly in this day and age of technology and ever-present communication channels, we who are independent developers working from our homes have to fight hard to maintain work-life balance.  It is very easy to be suckered into working through a weekend, holiday, anniversary — you name it!  However, we do not have to be a slave to the communication when it comes in the form of emails — I think of them as a quitely soft arrival (I keep sound turned off so that I don’t hear them arrive – unless I’m willing to know).  I look at them only when I’m ready to — some weekends I never look, most of the time I see them within a couple of hours after receipt.

I, like many other independent developers I know, seldom are not working on a weekend — and our client customers (many of whom are also working on a weekend) know it.  Using email as an un-obtrusive means of communicating works – and the end result is a high service level and opportunity for work-life balance that works.  Seems like a win-win situation to me!

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