There is a trend in small businesses to offer employees unlimited vacation time. The reality is that for many small businesses, they would essentially do this for their good employees anyway. While there is usually a policy that indicates how many days or weeks an employee would get, if you have employees who are going above and beyond, or who consistently work extra hours to make sure the company gets what they need to service their customers, a good leader will hardly ever say no to a time off request for these people. One of the ways to keep a good employee working hard is to let them know that their effort is recognized and appreciated. If someone is putting in that extra effort only to be told “no” when they want to take a vacation with their family because they haven’t accrued enough time, the extra effort will not last long.
The key to an “unlimited” vacation time policy is having good leaders. If you set clear goals for your employees which if achieved will bring the company to where they need to be, all you need to do is make sure that the goals are being reached. If they are, there is no reason to decline a time off request, regardless of how much other time off they have had. If you do not have consistent leadership however, this type of policy can lead to anger and bitterness from your star employees as they will find themselves picking up the slack from the lesser contributing employees who may abuse the policy.
As this can be a slippery slope that can go either way for a company, be sure to have a good leadership team in place with a clear system for goal setting and measurement. These tools can help you build a winning culture at your organization where employees thrive and so does your bottom line.
Michael Giuffrida from Southington CT has been operating businesses since 1997. He is an experienced entrepreneur in business management, profitable growth, business valuation, mergers and acquisitions, and information technology managed services.