Although business owners and C Suite folks can get tired of hearing about work-life balance, we know that Americans on average work for an extra 400 hours annually compared to their counterparts in other developed nations. Even when on vacation, most American workers don’t truly disconnect from the office entirely.
Over half of those surveyed by ELVTR – the virtual education platform – admit to working on vacation. On top of this, nearly 40% are taking less time off. This reduces the time spent out of the office two-fold: Americans are on vacation less, and during that time off, they’re still working. One reason is that 37% feel as if they have no one to delegate their tasks to, and 35% feel an implicit expectation to work during vacation.
The key takeaway here is that there are several factors influencing whether workers work during vacation. The influences include workplace expectations, a lack of competent support to cover their tasks, pestering coworkers, and feelings of guilt. No matter the reason, the inability to unplug negatively impacts the workers along with their travel partners.
There’s been a shift in mentality from “working to live” to “working to survive.” This shift can negatively affect mental and physical health and contribute to workplace burnout. And burnout can take years to recover from, so prioritizing vacations and employee mental health should be a target for any business that wants to be sustainable.
Despite everyone’s best intentions, these sorts of employment best practices can be difficult to execute.
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