Use Your Vacation Days Wisely-Or Not?

Posted by The Editors on July 28, 2011
Use Your Vacation Days Wisely-Or Not?

I recently came across a Wall Street Journal article about how companies are getting more lax with their vacation policies. Many companies, like NetFlix, allow employees to take as many days vacation as they want, whenever they want. Sounds too good to be true, right?

But what really caught my interest in the article was the monthly tradition that one Virginia-based company, The Motley Fool, started in its office. At a meeting of all 250 employees, one name is drawn from a hat. That person must take off two consecutive weeks some time in the coming month.

Upon their return, the lucky Chosen One has to tell the whole company what they did with their time off—tales have ranged from climbing a mountain to building a tree house, according to the article.

Having just come back to work after a weeklong staycation of my own, I know first hand how valuable having time to chill is (I’m not not saying I didn’t watch the entire first season of Laguna Beach…). Unfortunately, I have no incredible tales of my own—I did a lot of shopping, working on my tan by the pool, and visiting friends and family. I started asking around my office about what my coworkers would do during their own two-week staycation. I got some funny responses, including:

  • Actually try to pickle something, like cucumbers.
  • Go to a winery for a tour and tasting in the middle of the day, in the middle of the week.
  • Sit in the park and find as many English bulldogs to pet as possible.
  • Watch every Pauly Shore movie ever made.
  • Attempt to play an entire game of Monopoly from start to finish.
  • Bake a pie from scratch.
  • Attempt a DIY project at my apartment—yet to be determined what it is though!
  • Clean out my “everything drawer.”
  • Go tubing on a river, any river.
  • Scout out the city for antique and thrift shops.
  • Use all the Groupons I’ve bought in the past year.
  • Go to my parents' house in Maryland and help them clean out two spare rooms—they’re cramping my style every time I stay there. 

I hope more companies loosen up their vacation policies, so employees can start checking off items on their staycation lists. Until then, I’ll be finding time to fit in season two of Laguna Beach­­—after working hours.

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