How often do you take holidays? Not often enough it seems.
A 2012 Roy Morgan study found that Aussies have 128 days of annual leave accrued – that equates to 350 000 years of holidays! It also found that 1 in 4 of full time employees are leave stockpilers. So why are we all so afraid to take leave? The study found that work related barriers such as work load, lack of resources, scheduling conflicts and lack of funds are all contributing to our inability to take time off.
However being a slave to the job doesn’t paint a picture of wellness – employees who don’t take annual leave tend to be more unhappy at work, stressed and often display higher levels of depression or anxiety. Their leave-taking counterparts however are said to happier, exhibit fewer symptoms of workplace stress and are more productive at work.
It seems more and more companies are starting to appreciate the importance of annual leave with Virgin, Netflix and local online sportswear store StyleRunner all having an unlimited annual leave policy for all staff. Unlimited! Netflix’s official company policy states: ‘We should focus on what people get done, not on how many hours or days worked. Just as we don’t have a nine-to-five policy, we don’t need a vacation policy.’ Let’s hope more companies take note. And as for you, isn’t it time you filled in an annual leave form?