Vacation from WorkTechnology HAS NOT helped us to work less
In 2007, Business Week had an article entitled Do Us A Favor, Take A Vacation!

The article discusses how the American Worker makes an art of NOT taking vacations. How we deny ourselves the break a vacation gives even when we are on vacation. It’s a fact how technologies we created were suppose to help us work less - as defined by 1960/70′s utopia theorist - but in all actually we have created a situation where we work when we should not. After we wake up in the morning, on the commute, during lunch, after work and in the evenings; we find it even harder to get a way. Forbes had an article discussing how people can Use Technology to Spend Less Time Working but I’m not so sure about it.

It could be the economy. Our endless drive to get ahead or the fact that we are even afraid - and maybe guilty - to take the vacations we work so hard for.

Survey Says!!!
The article cites some interesting percentages based on a survey by the employment firm Hudson:

  • More than 50% of American workers fail to take all their vacation days.
  • 30% say they use less than half their allotted time.
  • 20% take only a few days instead of a week or two.
  • Among so-called extreme jobholders 42% claim they have to cancel vacation plans “regularly.”
  • Americans take even less vacation than the Japanese, the people who gave rise to karoshi—the phenomenon of being worked to death.

These figures were listed in 2007. I can only imagine what it is like today!

Management has a tougher time of saying “See ya next week!”
The article also states: Even when managers do go away, they don’t get away. Instead of mentally checking out in cabanas with cocktails, Americans have become bent-headed people of the hand held or laptop—gear that was supposed to be the mighty liberator but has turned into a wireless manacle. Which is why hotels are offering to lock up workaholics’ BlackBerrys, companies are frog-marching people off on vacation whether they like it or not, resorts are springing up that offer an unplugged respite from the world of work, and doctors are starting to write prescriptions for—YES—vacations.

While I am not currently working, it does not mean that I shouldn’t get away from the job of looking for a job - from the job of life. I think people need to take time for themselves. They need a get-a-way from the everyday surroundings that make them worry, stress, or think of their work. Sometimes we even need a get-a-way from our vacation.

I’m On Vacation!!!, but still come back here and visit!
With that, I’ll be on Vacation next week. Be on the look out for a few guest post from some great writers. I’ll be off to sun and beaches to enjoy time with family and maybe even play some golf.

Miss me while I’m gone but don’t miss me so much because as Arnold Schwarzenegger said I’ll be back!

Benjamin McCall is an HR practitioner with specializations in Leadership, Learning and Development, Business Strategy, OD, and HR. His passion for aligning the functions of HR with the strategies of business is evident in his thoughts around business management, people, leadership, and his love for family and golf! You can connect with him on twitter @BenjaminMcCall (@BenjaminMcCall)

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