PTO Is Meant To Be Taken

By Kevin Roth

Don’t simply “approve” vacation for your employees, promote and encourage it. When those dates come up, assure them that you have their role covered and urge them to enjoy their trip without thinking about work.

In my recent vacation overseas, it was amazing how I could easily predict who was from the U.S. based on the limited vacation time they had. Even with that limited time, many still felt obligated to be on top of their emails and had that anxious feeling of falling behind, thereby completely defeating the whole purpose behind a vacation.

While it can be extremely difficult to cover for certain key team members, great leaders will push those people to completely shut down during their PTO. It’s critical to recognize that the long-term mental and emotional benefits of allowing a team member to completely check out and refresh a few times a year will far outweigh the short-term benefits of having them checking in and working during those 1-2 week trips.

If you’re reading this and feel that it’s completely impossible to have a certain team member out of the office without them being reachable, it should be a wake up call to make some much needed adjustments in terms of headcount, cross-training or succession planning.

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