As the owner of a mystery shopping company, I read reports all the time where I can tell that the employee being evaluated is burned out and in need of a vacation. The level of service this type of employee provides is atrocious.
In a recent Market Watch blog, it was reported that 40% of Americans will leave vacation time on the table. Beyond that, it was reported that 61% work while on vacation with one in four being contacted by a colleague and one in five being contacted by their boss.
The blog post goes on to identify a “work martyr complex” that is developing since the recession. Workers are fearful of taking time off citing the anxiety of returning to a mountain of work, not being able to afford to take time off and believing no one else can do their work.
As managers and coaches in our organizations, it is critical that we create environments where our employees feel comfortable with scheduling and using their vacation time.
It’s important for your customers. A burned out employee may be more likely to be short with a customer or take short cuts when providing service.
It’s important for the team. An employee who needs a vacation may be unwilling to find ways to work together successfully with others when completing projects.
It’s important for the employee. An employee who has spent uninterrupted quality time with family and friends has a better energy level, a clearer focus, and a more pleasant disposition.
It’s important for the organization. Rested employees are healthier employees, and with most corporations carefully watching their health care benefit costs these days, the healthier employee helps the bottom line.
Set the tone in your organization when it comes to vacations. Set a good example by taking all of your paid time off and don’t check in to see how things are going. Your well-trained staff can handle things just fine.
Do you take all of your vacation time? If not, why?
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