Holidays, or when holidays are working days like any other
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Teleworking, four-day weeks, flexible hours… Work is becoming more flexible. Holidayism is a manifestation of this phenomenon. It consists of using one’s holidays or any other non-working time… to advance some professional tasks.
Working during your holidays may seem like a crazy idea, but it is gaining more and more ground at a time when work flexibilization undermines the balance between professional and personal life. This concept is reminiscent of “workcation”, this portmanteau word resulting from the diminutive of “job” (work) and “vacation” (vacation).
Except that these two terms do not refer to the same facts: furloughing is a harmful practice adopted by some anxious employees faced with a workload they consider insurmountable, while workcation concerns nomadic workers who want to join the useful pleasant.
Despite the development of new technologies and organizations, work is becoming more intense and stressful. Many employees complain of being overwhelmed and find it difficult to focus on certain tasks that require their full attention. Blame it on emails, notifications and other digital distractions.
Added to this is the excessive use of meetings, or “réunionite”. This practice represents 100 million dollars in lost revenue for large companies, according to a report by the University of North Carolina. It also takes a huge toll on employees’ productivity – however dear to their employers – as they spend, on average, 18 hours a week in 17.7 meetings.
A springboard to burnout
Because of this, many are forced to work outside of their office hours, or even on their days off. Concessions like being accessible from the ski slopes or sorting through your 180 unread emails between buying two Christmas presents may seem small, but they can lead to long-term fatigue. . In fact, leave is the designation of a permanent state of vigilance in which some employees find themselves afraid of missing something during their absence (which English speakers call “FOMO”), or who dare not question the limits of a hyperconnected world of work.
Many have fallen into this pit in recent years. More than two-thirds of HR managers in the UK are facing furloughs, according to the 2022 edition of the ‘Health and Wellbeing at Work’ report by trade association Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. Only 30% of employees surveyed say their company has implemented measures to combat this phenomenon.
However, they have every interest in doing so, according to Amrit Sandhar, founder of The Engagement Coach agency. “Organizations that work in an ‘always on’ culture can cause burnout in their employees, who are mentally and physically exhausted from working long hours and trying to deal with enormous pressure.“, he told the Stylist.”[Priver] our mind and body the ability to detach from work […] can reduce the desire we have for the latter. What may have started as a great job can now feel like a burden“.
The risk that vacation leavers run is the loss of meaning in work. This phenomenon is more difficult to detect than the famous burn-out because it is less brutal, but it is nevertheless widespread. Thus, 24% of French people believe that work is very important in their lives, according to a recent study by the Jean-Jaurès Foundation in collaboration with IFOP, compared to 60% in 1990.
If the work is worthless, then there is no need to kill yourself to do it well, as loud and clear to the followers of “quiet cessation”. This is where the shoe gets stuck: furloughs don’t make us better employees. It only forces us not to slow down in an insidious search for performance, which tends to make us, in the long run, less effective. This is the watered down sprinkler.