Taking Time Off From Work: Why Vacation is Good for You and Your Company

Americans are working more than ever, and an increasing number have taken less days off – in some cases, less than five days during the entire year. This approach to work may be doing more harm than good, and employers should consider the ramifications of employees not taking personal time.

Companies need to evaluate their vacation and time-off policies, putting themselves in a position to make themselves – and their employees –more successful. Offering paid vacation time as a part of a rich benefit package with a policy that allows employees to take the time off that they’ve earned will allow businesses to attract and retain the top talent in this highly competitive employment market.

Employees that burn out will be less productive or they will change jobs. It’s important that companies focus on the positive individual benefits that time off can bring to it’s employees, because it will ultimately benefit their organization. “We know that taking a break is extremely good for one’s mental health,” Susan Krauss Whitbourne, an adjunct professor of gerontology at the University of Massachusetts Boston, told Time. “It puts you in a different frame of mind, gets you out of your standard patterns and can give you time with family.” Taking time to get away gives workers the opportunity to relax, clear their head, get refreshed, and come back to the workplace more positive and more productive.

Here are some important benefits when employees take time away from work:

1. Improved mental health: Nothing good can come from working day after day without any breaks. When employees push yourself to work too many days in a row, eventually your brain starts to push back. Thoughts get jumbled, cloudiness takes over. You start reading the same sentences over and over again, not fully comprehending it. Time off, even a day, helps you get refreshed.

2. Productivity: When your brain is fried, your productivity suffers. The mundane aspects of any job can drain your energy and passion. Focusing on anything is impossible. A week off can bring the benefits of refreshed mental energy and re-engagement to the work at hand.

3. Work/Life balance: Time away from work will remind you that you are still a person, that life goes on outside of the workplace. Give yourself time to do the things you love outside of work – hobbies, travel, or just time to kick back and relax. Whether you choose to spend time with your partner, family, or friends, time away helps you reconnect and work on the relationships in your life. A recent New York Times article is titled: “Your Job Will Never Love You Back.” That sums it up perfectly.

Companies that set a priority on ensuring employees take time off are more successful – productivity is greater, they experience higher levels of engagement and they can attract and retain the best talent. Evaluate your vacation time benefits to ensure that they match the benchmarks for today’s employment market. Even more important is putting in place a policy that allows your team to take the time off they have earned. Work with the team at Training Innovations to develop an Onboarding and Recruiting plan that focuses on these important areas. The result will be invaluable when you can successfully retain that talent you’ve worked hard to attract!



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