COVID-19 may have spoiled a lot of summer holiday plans but that doesn’t mean your employees should postpone their vacations. In fact, as an employer, you should encourage your employees to use their holiday allowances over the coming months - for their health and the health of your organization.
Medical research shows a direct correlation between taking a break from work and enhancing one’s physical and mental wellbeing. The health benefits of holidays include less stress, a healthier heart and better mental health.
In one of the most comprehensive studies on cardiovascular disease, the Framingham Heart Study found that employees who vacationed regularly were less at risk of heart attack or cardiovascular disease, compared to those who did not take time off.
In fact, men who did not vacation for several years had a 30 per cent higher chance of suffering a heart attack, while women who vacationed only once every six years or less were eight times more likely to develop or suffer from a heart attack or disease than women who vacationed at least twice a year.
Other studies make a direct link between vacation leave and mental wellness. For example, a survey of 1,500 rural women by the Marshfield Clinic, found that those who vacationed less than once every two years were more vulnerable to suffer from depression and stress compared to women who vacationed at least twice a year.
Another study by the Brain Health Center Inc. revealed that holiday travel promotes brain health and mental resilience.
Medical research also makes a clear connection between giving employees paid time off and improving organizational performance. That’s because vacationing employees are likely to return to work with clearer heads and fresh perspectives. This, in turn, can lead to creative ideas and ultimately innovative solutions. Want to foster creativity and productivity in the workplace? Let your employees relax and return to you full of energy and ready to create!
Vacation can also be an essential tool in retention and recruitment efforts. According to a survey by e-commerce firm Rakuten.ca, nearly six in 10 (57 per cent) of Canadians would trade more vacation time over a salary increase. Younger workers, in particular, regard paid time off as an important part of their compensation package.
In summary, the scientific evidence is clear: holidays are an investment that pays healthy dividends for your employees and your organization.
For over 75 years, Medavie Blue Cross has been a leading health services partner for individuals, employers and governments across Canada. As the country’s leading Blue Cross plan with over one million card holders, we are a premier all-in-one carrier that provides health, dental, travel, life and disability benefits to...