Tis the season of holidays from now till the middle of January; there are at least six holidays that take place in December alone! How do you account for vacations, PTO or holiday leave with your entire staff? Here are some tips to alleviate the demand and avoid ruining someone’s holiday.
1.) Open Communication: Let your employees know, upon hiring if possible, how the company PTO/vacation policies work. It’s also good to remind all employees at the beginning of October (pre-holiday time) what the company policies are and how you will be handling them this year. If you need people in the office between the major holidays of Christmas and New Year’s, be clear on that fact. Allow staff the opportunity to volunteer or swap on their own and then go from there.
2.) Seniority vs. First Come: Again, it’s best to rely on company policy in this situation, but if no specific policy is in place, it may be best to come up with a department policy. If you rely on seniority alone, the people who have been with the company the longest will always get what they want and that may create animosity amongst staff. The alternative is first come-first served and that opens the door for those that are super planners to always have the holidays they want because they asked for Christmas and New Year’s vacation in February! Try an enhanced version of both scenarios and blend them so that the most senior employees and the most organized are rotating holidays with the youngest and not as organized.
3.) Be Thankful, Appreciative and Compassionate: Concessions will be made, feelings may be hurt and some may feel unappreciated. Be sure that you are sincere and compassionate with your employees. Thank them for being accommodating and take note of it, next year maybe things can be switched in their favor.
The most important thing to remember during this holiday season, be respectful of your employee’s holiday and most importantly their feelings. You may not share their sentiments or beliefs but they are theirs and they make your company what it is, respect goes a long way.