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June 19, 2017

Stay Positively Productive During Vacation Season

Summer is vacation season when most of your employees have scheduled time off. While vacation season gives staff needed time away from the office to rest and recharge, it creates challenges for managers who must ensure work is done and deadlines are met. The key to success is planning.shutterstock_95647150

Review the Vacation Schedule

  • Meet with employees a week before their scheduled time off.
  • Have them provide a list of tasks that need to be done, any deadlines or deliverables due, or open issues that must be addressed during their absence.
  • Identify and train back-up staff to handle necessary job duties and activities for absent employees.

Establish Procedures

  • Require staff to set up out-of-office responders for email and create rules to forward key emails to assigned staff or to you.
  • Remind employees to change voicemail greetings and provide back-up numbers for customer assistance.
  • Make sure key customers and vendors are personally contacted about an employee’s absence and assure them of continued service quality.
  • Ask employees to provide you with contact information where they can be reached while on vacation.

Consider Your Options

  • Prioritize deliverables and deadlines to ensure you have adequate resources.
  • Consider flexible scheduling, overtime, shift changes, temporary employees, and consultants to cover absent employees. Some employees may prefer to take time off in short spurts rather than entire weeks. Make this an option if your policies allow.
  • Cross-train staff to develop a pool of knowledgeable resources that can fill in for critical activities during vacation time.

Vacation time may not be easy for you as a manager, but it is needed time off. Remember to take your own vacation and prepare for it just as you want your employees to prepare!

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