Maybe even the moon

21. 6. 2013

Every aspect of a manager's job is challenging. We are practically expected to be able to know it all. When you combine the stress of our work with the process of managing our personal lives, along with taking care of our health: including keeping fit, eating healthily and managing stress it can start to feel overwhelming. I used to wonder how other people in my position could so easily maintain a healthy balance in their life.

Time management is critical, although, for people in my situation, it's easier said than done. I’m well organized, and I'm not a procrastinator. I also try to make the most out of my time. The question is, if time is what I'm lacking, how could I possibly learn to manage it better?

I decided to look into how I could make life easier for myself and other managers. I wanted to know how I could maximize the limited time that I had. The answer was right in front of me. It’s an attractive benefit; it's modern and targeted. It's exactly what is needed in our modern age. I now know how to find space, gain more time and take proper care of myself despite my rigorous routine.

The solution is to hire a concierge. This is a benefit that is provided by banks and other companies to their valued clients. I was thinking; my clients – the HR clients – are employees. All that is needed to do is to define a group of similarly busy managers, add a little bit of marketing and wait for the result.

What exactly does it mean to be a concierge nowadays? The sky is the limit. I can have anything I want taken care of, Breakfast at Tiffany's, an appropriate gift for my mother in law, a painting for my apartment... Why shouldn't I take full advantage of a few of these many services? What about a ticket to your favorite theater play or sports match? Don't you want to run home after work to walk your four-legged friend? Are you going on vacation and do not know what to do with him? Do you want to make sure that you remember when the birthday of your loved ones are; would a reminder of these events be helpful? Do you often feel like you can't find your way, and you are driving blind without navigation? Why not hire a personal navigator? What about a minor traffic offense you want to challenge but don't have time for? A representative can negotiate on your behalf with the appropriate authorities. Do you need help with buying clothes? A shopping companion and stylist who can connect you with a selected store after closing time may be the solution you are looking for.

A concierge can provide an extensive range of services in all aspects of your life. The name is derived from the French title 'comte des cierges' or 'count of candles.' These people were put in charge of organizing events that would often be held in palaces. They made sure that there was adequate lighting, which meant that they would change candles or relight them as needed. Over time the comte des cierges's responsibilities expanded.

There are two major rolls that a concierge can take.  Sometimes a concierge’s role is to ensure that needed tasks are taken care of on time, sometimes their primary task is to be a motivator. Now more than ever, a personal concierge is expected to be able to get things done and serve as a motivator. A concierge is an example of a trend in the market, which gives us a target to aim for, that will give us more time to spend on our employees and clients. In corporate structures, this service is commonly offered to senior managers and is often used by expatriates.

Nowadays, changing candles is no longer necessary, but I will admit that my personal concierge assistant has been able to sweeten my life and I certainly like having the opportunity to indulge myself. Why not do it as well? For yourself and your employees.

Author: Alena Vlckova
HR consultant, LIGS lecturer

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