Take a vacation
by Catherine Welborn
Problem: It’s nearly summer. You’re feeling burned out. You deserve a vacation. Heck, you need a vacation. You’re worried, however, that everything will fall to pieces if you’re out of the office for more than a day or two.
Solution: Follow these tips to prepare your team so that you can take a vacation and truly relax:
- Learn employees’ vacation plans as soon as possible. Then plan head and make adjustments, ensuring that the team can function normally while people are out. That also allows you to avoid scheduling your vacation when your top employees will be on vacation; you’ll depend on those people during your absence.
- Share your schedule well in advance. If employees feel like you announced your vacation with little warning, they may feel frustrated and abandoned. Tell them your plans a month ahead of time, if possible, to make certain that they have plenty of time to meet with you if they have questions or concerns about assignments.
- Prepare your stand-in. Whether you have one person serve as your back-up or you delegate tasks to multiple people, clarify your expectations, explaining the work you want completed and how you expect the stand-in(s) to act. Tell employees who’s in charge while you’re gone. Give at least one person a way to reach you, but indicate that it’s just for emergencies. Explain that you trust their judgment.
- Assign worthwhile tasks. If you’re worried that your team will sit around twiddling their thumbs, it’s tempting to assign mountains of work. However, assign only reasonable work that is worthy of employees’ time. If you assign senseless tasks, employees will likely resent you for it. Also, prioritize assignments to ensure that employees complete the most important tasks first.
- Be a role model. Do you want your employees to worry about work throughout their vacations? Or do you want them to return refreshed and relaxed? Employees will follow your example, so show them that you value a healthy work-life balance and that you expect them to as well.
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