On Vacation, Owners Think About Work

Entrepreneurs find it hard to get away from it all, and many feel guilty when they do.

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For corporate desk jockeys, summer means vacation and a chance to forget work. For small-business owners, even time away from the office doesn't mean time off. Turns out that even when they are out of the office, most small-business owners never stop thinking about their companies.

Small-business owners do make time for themselves, with 81 percent satisfied with the amount of "downtime" they have, according to an American Express survey of 626 owners of companies with fewer than 100 employees. That down time comes with a price, though. Two thirds of business owners stress out about their work-life balancing act, and nearly half feel guilty about having fun instead of working.

That stress may be misplaced because it turns out small-business owners, like the rest of us, are at their most inventive when they are free from the office. About 35 percent of owners surveyed said they get their best ideas when they aren't working. Men generally get creative on their way to work, while women are more likely to wake up in the middle of the night with the light bulb turning on.


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