Atlanta — Small-business owners are starting to deal with an annual headache: Everyone wants the day after Thanksgiving off. And the week after Christmas.
Any owner who’s suffering through the annual holiday vacation crunch — which can mean either too few staffers on hand or a business populated by disgruntled workers — needs to rethink the company’s policy on time off. Or, if there isn’t a policy, create one
The vacation problem is often twofold, a lack of planning on the owner’s part and a lack of communication with employees.
“More often than not, we think of it when we are right up against the holidays,” said Mary Massad, director of corporate recruiting services for Administaff, a Houston-based human resources firm. “Most employees have already started thinking about their plans long ago.”
The best way to keep disappointment and strife to a minimum is to formulate a vacation policy, detailing how much time off each staffer gets, how far in advance they need to request it and how conflicts will be resolved — for example, by seniority, or first come, first served.
Another very important issue: what happens to time off that isn’t used during the year. You’ll also want to include the holidays on which the company will be closed.