Vacations are essential for your workers. They get a chance to relax, get their mind off work and build stronger ties with their families. However, when managers and business owners go on vacation they can harm the company culture if they don’t do one thing, let go.
According to a study done by Project Time Off, a travel industry-sponsored research group, managers and highly engaged employees don’t unplug or disconnect from work during vacations.
In particular, the study showed:
86% of managers don’t disconnect themselves from work communication during a vacation
93% of senior-level managers or officers don’t stop working on vacation
Don’t Think This Is Good For Your Company Culture
If you find yourself in one of those groups of people, don’t fool yourself and think you are helping your company or your staff. If anything, you could be doing more harm than anything else.
When you go on vacation and continue to contact work and give directives from half-way around the world, you might believe you are sending the message you’re a dedicated employer or manager. However, you probably don’t need to send that message. By being in the position you hold, you have already made your hard work and dedication evident.
What you are probably doing is sending three messages that could go a long way to destroying your company culture.
The message there is no real vacation for the truly dedicated employees at the company. People will see their leadership handing business on vacation and come to believe that is the expected course of action.
Second, you’re sending a message to your immediate staff and subordinates that you don’t trust them to do the right thing, to make the right decisions.
Finally, workers who take vacations and try to avoid work will believe there is no way they are going to promote or advance at your company without giving themselves to your company 100% of the time. If they aren’t willing to do that, why try? In the end, they may decide they want to work at a different company.
Sometimes, You Have To Deny Yourself To Save Your Company Culture
Technological advances have made disconnecting from work one of the hardest things to do. With the advent of smartphones, people could bring the ability to communicate to virtually anyplace in the world.
The ability to do this is a convenient and helpful tool, but it can also develop into an addiction. People can become dependent on the device to keep them in contact at all times. This level of communication isn’t necessary for most people and managers should fight attempts by people not to let go.
If you are on vacation, fight any attempt to contact work by asking yourself if you would go to a payphone and pay to call your company.
Leave the person who is covering for your job information on how to get ahold of you, but only if necessary.
Complete and sign a contract with your spouse or better yet, your kids, that you will not do any work while on vacation.
Equal Parts Consulting is familiar with the problem of executives not being able to relax and let go. If you are looking for a way to strengthen your company culture, we encourage you to contact us.