Boss, I Need To Talk About My Holidays Now!
Have you had your team members come to you saying this?
Do you notice it is mostly at an inappropriate time when you are in the middle of doing something else?
As your business grows, the interruptions for holiday requests become more frequent. I was talking with a business owner recently, who said she was amazed at how often the holiday request interruptions were and that by the time she had looked up what holidays they were due, took a look at the roster and the month the request was for, and then discussed when the holidays could be taken and put them into the roster and her diary, it could take 15 to 20 minutes each time a request came in.
If you are running a business that has team members employed, it is important that you set some guidelines around how things are done in your business. Most would call them operational procedures.
Holiday requests are one area that you need to set the guidelines on.
The first thing to do is, decide what day you will process leave applications. Just because someone has come to you this instance, doesn’t mean you have to arrange their holiday there and then.
Once you have decided on your plan for approving holiday requests, you must let your team members know, so they will be aware of what will happen when they put in their holiday requests.
The next thing to do, is to require holiday requests to be submitted on a specific leave form, or by email.
The submitted leave forms are then placed in a specific team folder, where, on the day you have set to process leave applications, you will go to that folder to get the applications, so they can all be processed at the same time.
If you have a business where you have to prepare rosters on regular basis, ensure you have a set day and time for preparing your roster and review the holiday requests at this day and time.
By carrying out your holiday approval process in this manner, you will find you will save time by doing them in one batch. It will also be easier to prepare your roster as well.
It will also reduce interruptions in your day, as the team member can simply hand you the application or leave it in the team folder, thus not having to stop you from what you are doing.
If a team member comes to you and they say they need specific dates for holidays because they have already booked the holidays, without consulting you, do not feel pressured to accept their request. You let them know that you will review their request on the day you have planned. Then, If the dates they have requested do not suit the business, organise with them dates that are suitable and they will need to change their bookings.
There will always be short notice leave required for compassionate grounds and we will always work with the team member on these occasions. However, requests for holidays, need to suit the business as well as the team member. I have seen businesses struggling, because there were too many staff on leave at the same time, simply because of poor planning processes by the owners.
As the business owner, it is your responsibility to ensure this does not happen.
Having a planned approach to how you plan and approve holiday requests, enables you to ensure that your team get their well earned break and the business carries on seamlessly whilst they are away.
If you would like to know more about managing your team, simply send me a message and I will follow up.
Have a great week.
Peter Johnson – The Time Retriever