Situation: A CEO has not taken a vacation for years due to focus on the company. He knows that he needs a vacation and wants to take one. However, he feels guilty taking time off. How do you take a guilt-free vacation?
Advice from the CEOs:
- For your general health, you need to take time off to refresh and recharge!
- Think of the vacation as your CEO Test – have you created a team that can perform in your absence?
- You may be amazed at the initiative that some will take given the freedom to do so. As a corollary, initiative is accompanied by risk and your employees may make some bad choices. Be patient. Congratulate them for taking initiative and coach to improve choices.
- Stay out of touch. Don’t call in daily and see what happens. If and when you do call in, don’t solve challenges that come up – let your people solve the challenges. Keep a few notes. On your return see where you need to adjust procedures to allow employees to make independent decisions.
- More than one CEO has found that taking 3-4 week vacations each year has had very positive results. The company actually performs more efficiently and with more energy upon their return than it did when they left!
- To ensure that you take a vacation, schedule it in advance. Let everyone know that you are going to take it and Just Do It!
- If you can’t take the time to plan a vacation, have your spouse or a loved one plan the vacation.
- If you need to feel in touch during your vacation, take your laptop. You may never even use it, but it will be there as a security blanket. Once you are on vacation, let family and personal priorities rightly take precedence over your need to stay in touch.
Key Words: Vacation, Company, Focus, Guilt, Health, Refresh, Recharge, Initiative, Patience, Coach, Problems, Valuation, Performance, Planning, Priorities, Family, Stress, Support