For many people one thing weighs heavily on their mind during the holidays: vacation time. December will likely be the most popular month of the year for paid time off (PTO) requests. The average American has 10 days of PTO per year, along with 10 federal holidays. The end of the year not only brings up issues on how to handle PTO, but also how to plan for the next year, what days are rolling over, and if any time needs to be used up. This week, we’re breaking down how to navigate vacation time so you can enjoy the season!
1. Plan Ahead
A little forward thinking and creativity will go a long way. While it’s too late to plan ahead of time for this holiday season, you can still expand on your existing days off. Was 2019 a healthy year? Then take a sick day or two to turn Christmas into a long weekend, or New Year’s Eve into an all-day party. Even if you don’t have time to plan an elaborate vacation, if any of your days off don’t roll over, look into a staycation or a quick road trip. It’s still time off that you earned- so take it!
2. Ask the Right Way
With asking for time off, over-communication is always the answer. Be transparent about what you are looking for, and hold your ground (within reason). Ask as soon as you have firm dates, or if you're flexible, propose two different options to your supervisor. The more in advance you ask, the more likely you are to be approved!
When you ask, be sure to highlight the nature of your time off. Unplugging from the office is hard given that it’s all too easy to pull out our phones and refresh email on vacation. Make sure you communicate if you plan on being off the grid, sprinkling in a work from home day, or available in case a one-off problem arrises.
Finally, provide an out of office plan, especially if the time you want to take is coming up soon or occurs during a busy time at the office.
For all the supervisors out there, create a PTO calendar for employees to reference before asking for time off. That way they can see what others are already taking and better plan themselves.
3. Relax and Enjoy
Now that we’ve taken the stress out of planning PTO, it’s time to be “out of sight, out of mind” while you are actually on vacation! Turn off cellular data for work-related apps while you're away, set up an out of office email reply, and be clear with your colleagues on what the boundaries for contact are.
At AdvantEdge Workspaces, when you go on vacation, we work to ensure your business still runs smoothly! With call answering and mail reception services, you’ll have nothing to worry about while that out of office message is on. Visit our spaces today to see how we can help you out on your next vacation!