Even if you love your job, there is going to come a time when you need a break, and while that is what vacations are for, more and more companies are realizing that’s just not enough.
A new trend is seeing companies give their employees a week off to avoid burnout. Back in May, Lessonly, a company that makes training software, issued a mandate requiring all employees to take a week of in July, while Hubspot introduced a global week of rest, and Bumble also had office workers take a week off.
All these companies required the week off to deal with the widespread issue of burnout, which has become even worse due to the pandemic. It’s gotten so bad that the International Classification of Diseases considers it an occupational phenomena.
Lessonly says they decided to add the summer break after requiring employees to take days off during the winter holiday, and those employees responded with appreciation for the time off. "We saw the benefit of the winter break; we said, 'Let's do that midyear as well,'" recalled Lessonly’s Megan Jarvis.
- But is this week off really affective at dealing wih the problem of burnout? Doug Mennin, a clinical psychology professor at Columbia University, suggests it’s really only a short-term solution, but notes “being able to recharge” with a week of “can be helpful.” Darcy Gruttadaro, director of the Center for Workplace Mental Health at the American Psychiatric Association Foundation adds that while a week off can be considered a luxury or some companies, it can result in more “loyalty” and “employee productivity and performance,” noting that “seems well worth the investment.”
Gruttadaro does note that it would be important for employers to really know what their employees want and need, and to understand why they are experiencing burnout before they just implement such programs.