This past year has left most people in the workforce exhausted and in desperate need of a break. As we approach the holidays, it is essential to remember that taking advantage of your holiday break is a great way to lead by example. It can be easy for a manager or boss to get wrapped up in project deadlines and dismiss taking a proper holiday break. While this may help with completing projects, it leaves employees with mixed emotions about their holiday hours.
Use Your Vacation Hours
One of the most important things you can do as a leader in the workplace is to use your holiday hours. Using your holiday hours shows employees that it is encouraged to take a break and spend time with family. It can be hard to take a break when end-of-year deadlines are approaching. Even though deadlines are important, understand that employees are only human and deserve to work at a company that encourages time both inside and outside the office. “There is never going to be a good time to take off at the moment, and therefore there is a need to bite the bullet and do it. It’s important.” – Margo Manning.
Because of deadlines creeping up, it can be tempting to use holiday hours as a way to work remotely. This is not a good idea for a few reasons. Never taking a break from work is a sign that you may be a workaholic. While some people may joke about being a workaholic, there are serious health risks to overworking yourself.
Additionally, using holiday hours as a way to work remotely sends the message to employees that you’re only giving them holiday hours because you have to. This can negatively affect how employees spend their holiday vacations. When the standard implies that a holiday vacation is just a way to continue working from home, it can negatively impact employee morale and productivity. When an employee feels like they are never able to take a break from work, it creates feelings of frustration, leading to employee turnover in the future.
Having leaders who utilize their holiday hours correctly encourages employees to do the same. After the stress of this past year, both leaders and employees need to prioritize mental health in the workplace. Encouraging employees to take their holiday vacations and use the time to unplug from work stress is crucial to helping employees feel valued.
The holiday season is stressful for several reasons, but as a leader, you don’t want your employees to attribute these feelings to their job. Showing employees that their job is a place where they can find encouragement is how you keep employees happy and committed to company values.