Passing Trend or Productive Way to Fight Burnout in Your Team?
As mental health issues skyrocket post-Covid, the global cost of depression and anxiety has hit a whopping $1 trillion a year in lost productivity, leaving people leaders and HR experts wondering how to stem the tide.
Because with 76% of employees experiencing burnout at least some of the time (plus 28% experiencing it ‘always’ or ‘very often’), the need for employer intervention is clear and present.
But as a small business employer, what can you do to show your teams you truly get it?
Enter, the employee sabbatical.
Over the past few years, employee sabbatical leave has become increasingly popular, with many companies encouraging their team members to take extended breaks from work.
Sounds great for employees — but is it the right choice for your SMB?
In this unmissable ebook, we’ll dive into the whats, whys, and hows of extended breaks from work, plus we’ll share some examples of big brands and SMBs who have leveraged their sabbatical programs for the good of their employees (and their revenue).
Employee sabbatical definition: An extended break from work that offers employees time to pursue other interests or just chill the heck out. Employees are still technically employees and they’ll return to work after their time away, but during their sabbatical they’ll be 100% beholden to no one. ⛱️ 🌴
Sabbaticals have been around since the beginning of time (no joke — in Biblical times farmers took a sabbatical every seven years to let their fields rejuvenate👩🏾🌾), but in business the practice is more recent, edging into popularity around 1969.
But even after decades of employee sabbatical leave, few companies offer the opportunity for extended breaks. That is, until 2018 when the idea took off with around 15% of US companies taking the plunge.
Here’s how an employee sabbatical leave typically works:
Psst! Although we love offering you the latest HR info, we’re not lawyers, and none of this information should be taken as legal advice. If you’re interested to know more about the legal side of employee sabbaticals, get in touch with a legal pro for expert help.
Despite an increasing number of companies jumping on the employee sabbatical bandwagon, not all employers are convinced of their value. But with so many employees eager to take a break, it’s time to give the employee sabbatical a second look.
Here’s why sabbatical leave can make a great job perk, even at smaller companies:
There’s a reason top brands are at the top — and great employee experience has a lot to do with it.
Here are a few companies that know sabbaticals leave employees feeling relaxed, happy and ready to work. 💆
“Making the sabbatical work] built loyalty with a member of the team that we really valued… the employee was keen to come back and he seemed to have a fresh energy for the role and the business… [Sabbaticals are] a good opportunity to compete with the big guys on something other than salary and pension.”
— Nina Mack, Owner, worship.agency [Source]
With employee mental health at an all-time low, it’s time companies (whatever their size) start thinking seriously about giving their people a much-needed break.
From boosted productivity to increased candidate interest, many brands have already found ways to harness the positive impact of extended breaks from work — and the number of companies getting involved is rising by the day.
The benefits are huge for employees as well as the business — even if they lose out on pay, the opportunity to take a breather, learn new skills and see the world is often too good to miss out on.
So, why not take the lead on employee experience and create a sabbatical scheme that works for both your people and your business?