Forcing someone to take a vacation makes it not a vacation.
Maybe they don’t want to return from two-weeks on the beach to a tripled workload. Perhaps they’re working on a project they love. Or maybe they’re really counting on a full paycheck.
Regardless of the reason, few employees support the idea of mandatory vacation, even though it is within employers’ rights in Canada—and even though, overall, Canadians are pretty bad at utilizing their vacation time (According to Expedia.ca, 10 million vacation days went unused by workers in Canada last year).
What to offer instead? Flexible, unlimited vacation. The idea of “unlimited” might scare some employers but, as the stats suggest above, it’s not actually something they need to worry about. The concept is telling employees it’s okay to take as much or as little time off as they need to optimize their own personal productivity. Genius, right?
Consider that people recharge in different ways, and not everyone wants to take time off. For these people—admittedly, not the majority—being forced to relax is not relaxing at all . . . [Give] people the freedom to set their own vacations and, crucially, sending unambiguous signals that no career harm will come from their choice to take time off. It also means letting them work when they want to.
Flexibility over rigidity when it comes to vacations. Simple.