While forcing your employees to take more vacation time might sound counterintuitive, a new survey suggests that they may desperately need the push.
More than 135 million Americans say they haven’t taken a vacation in the past 12 months, according to a study conducted by travel insurance company Allianz Global Assistance. This constitutes 56 percent of the population. The telephone survey comprised 1,000 participants, and defined a vacation as one week away from work anywhere that was at least 100 miles from home.
Last year, according to Allianz, 126 million Americans -- or 52 percent of the workforce -- reported neglecting vacation.
While the study did not specify why vacation time remained on the table, similar research has concluded that Americans fear being perceived as dispensable and also dread work pileup upon their return.
Because vacations lead to fresh perspectives as well as creative insights and reduced stress levels for employees, however, some companies are experimenting with new policies in order to encourage workers to unplug. Last year, for instance, Richard Branson announced an unlimited vacation policy for employees at Virgin.
And in the realm of parental leave, Netflix just announced an unlimited paid parental leave policy, which states that new parents can take as much time off as they want during the first year of the child’s birth or adoption.