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  • Writer's pictureLindi Engelbrecht

Unlocking the Key to Unplugging: Leaders and the Art of Taking Annual Leave



Recent research by the America’s International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans highlights a 40% boost in productivity for employees who indulge in annual leave – a statistic any leader would want for their teams.


However, a surprising 69% of professionals, as revealed by RotaCloud, forego their annual leave, emphasizing the need for a mindset shift in the corporate world.


Annual leave isn't just a pause button for personal well-being; it's a leadership tool that sets the tone for a healthy work environment. Leaders play a pivotal role in fostering a culture where taking time off is not only accepted but encouraged. While stepping away is essential, preparing for this hiatus can be a leadership challenge.


Here are 8 key strategies to ensure a seamless departure and uninterrupted team momentum.


Plan Ahead:

Strategic planning is paramount. Evaluate your calendar, considering workloads, imminent deadlines, and major projects. Communicate your leave well in advance, affording your team ample preparation time and giving you the opportunity to gather necessary resources.


Delegate Responsibilities:

Empower your team by delegating responsibilities. Identify competent individuals for key tasks, communicate roles clearly, and grant decision-making authority. This not only eases your workload but nurtures growth within your team.


Provide Clear Instructions:

Craft a comprehensive handover document detailing ongoing projects, deadlines, contacts, and expectations. Detailed instructions minimize the need for constant communication during your absence.


Consider Temporary Cover:

Explore hiring temporary staff or contractors to alleviate workloads, a solution not limited to annual leave but applicable throughout the holiday season.


Communicate with Stakeholders:

Notify clients and colleagues about your leave well in advance. Provide alternative contacts, address concerns proactively, and assure stakeholders of seamless operations during your absence.


Set Boundaries and Establish Backup Plans:

To truly disconnect, communicate your availability clearly. Establish backup plans for unforeseen circumstances, ensuring your team is equipped to handle issues without constant reliance on you.


Trust Your Team:

Empower your team by trusting them. Allow autonomy for decision-making, fostering a positive work culture that encourages growth and collaboration.


Prioritize Self-Care:

Don't neglect self-care during your leave. Trust in your team's capabilities, refrain from constant work-related check-ins, and use this time to recharge and engage in activities that bring joy.


Preparing for annual leave as a leader demands meticulous planning, effective delegation, and clear communication. By adopting these strategies, leaders can ensure a seamless transition, allowing for a well-deserved break with peace of mind and confidence in their team's capabilities.


Interested to learn how working with DIGGER could help your business to grow? Contact us to chat about your plans.


Who are we: DIGGER is a Niched Talent marketplace where we connect Audit & CA Professionals to great career opportunities and to each other in a thriving community.


Our Vision: To create a scalable solution for connecting highly skilled, diverse talent within high demand Technical careers.


Our Ambition: To see an explosion of Talent that will contribute positively, not just to Africa’s digital economy, but to a global society. We are building a community of the most extraordinary doers in the world. To start from Africa and expand globally.


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