The Importance of Paid Time off and Vacation

Americans famously get less paid time off than other developed nations, and yet we don’t manage to use it all. While it may seem better to have your employees working than to have them enjoying their PTO, the reality is that you should want them out of the office. Taking a break is good for them and good for your business. Here’s why and how to get your employees to take advantage of their PTO allotment.

Remove the Fear

Marketwatch reported that 54 percent of Americans don’t use all their allotted PTO because they are afraid—of getting fired, of coming back to work completely overwhelmed and that things will fall apart while they’re gone. These are all problems the company can resolve. Make sure employees know that vacations are planned for and expected. Focus on cross-training employees so that whenever one person is out of the office, someone else can handle emergencies. Make sure work is assigned out so that when an employee returns from vacation, they aren’t playing catch-up.

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5 thoughts on “The Importance of Paid Time off and Vacation

  1. Heck yeah. We need MORE time off, not less. Not because we’re lazy, but we need REST.

    In 2014, I took a trip to the UK for nearly three weeks. It was the first real vacation I’d had in years, and the first time I’d ever taken off any job long enough to actually relax. I came back raring to go—once I got over my jet lag, haha. I realize that was a long break, but boy did I need it.

    People aren’t machines. They need breaks. They need to mentally disengage from work on a regular basis so they can rejuvenate themselves.

  2. Yes, not just banks! In our manufacturing company a bright young accountant who kept a clean desk and seemed efficient turned out to be stuffing tons of undone work in a drawer. It was discovered by the person covering for him during his vacation. Conversely, I know of a number of excellent but underappreciated employees whose effort was revealed when others tried to cover their workload during vacation. You’d want to know about that before such an employee leaves and needs to be replaced with two people.

    1. That’s exactly what I was thinking: that some don’t want to be off for fear that others will learn exactly what they have been — or not been — doing! 🙂

      1. When you are that said employee described in above comments, the main reason you try to avoid taking that much needed PTO is coming back to the mess created by the lack of similar effort by co-employees who leave all the details for your return

  3. You always come up with such awesome pieces to think upon. Thanks for sharing and keep writing.

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