I recently wrote about BYOD and sick days becoming work from home days and never thought about vacation time becoming work time due to BYOD or bring your own device. Thanks to Ari the Phone.com CEO who must have understood this issue before most of us had even heard of it I got a full fledged vacation 15 months ago. I went over seas and Ari told me to let my co workers handle my responsibilities for those 2 weeks. I was so grateful because I could really disconnect. This isn’t the case in most companies. Most CEO’s never stump up and tell their employees before they leave on vacation to disconnect and forget about email and the rest of their responsibilities.
The big issue here is now that people are bringing their own devices to work, whether it’s a smart phone, tablet or laptop, they are also taking it on vacation with them and tempted to respond to “just that one email”. This can easily cascade into a 2 hour work session and your significant other getting upset. It’s the company’s job to set standards and practices in terms of working during vacation time but it’s the employee who needs to have the willpower and follow through to not check their email.
Now that it’s vacation season it’s time to decide how to handle this but handle it you must or you’ll end up with burnt out employees. Talk to your IT guys and find out if you can suspend email delivery. On the Phone.com control panel you can forward your vacationing employees extension to voicemail or to someone elses extension. Do your employees a favor like Ari did for me and tell them to fully disconnect, they’ll appreciate it and you’ll get a renewed employee on their return.