Why taking time to detach from work should not just be saved for a summer holiday
Steelcase, experts in people at work, has researched how space and design elements can influence productivity rates and wellbeing amongst the workforce. Despite there being a lot of commentary on the importance of switching off whilst on holiday, Steelcase has found that, in order to truly secure a productive and mentally sound workforce all year-round, being able to take regular intervals away from the tasks of the day-to-day office routine, is crucial. Their most recent study of global office workers found that:
- 51% of people say they need an escape from working in the same place during their day, whether they were alone or with others
- 53% of employees say they can’t find the right types of space they need
- 43% believe informal spaces can help build more trust
Alex Gifford, Brand Communications Manager at Steelcase, has said that –
“Time away from work, means time away from work. The approach any organisation should take is to plan ahead and ensure a team’s work is evenly distributed in a colleague’s absence; this in turn allows for any person taking time away from the office to be able to truly ‘refresh’ their focus and indulge in some downtime. If you, as an employee, are confident that your team and your employer have your back while you are away, you are naturally in a better position to just put the phone down and enjoy the limited amount of time you have.”
Make the most of your holiday
According to the Office for National Statistics, since 1996 there has been a significant decrease in two-week breaks in favour of taking more holidays in short bursts and still, in the UK, 33 percent of us are not using our yearly holiday allowance, according to research by Wolters Kluwer. The same research, however, demonstrated the benefits of taking more holidays, with 67 percent of people feeling greater job satisfaction and 66 percent feel more productive after getting the opportunity to holiday and recharge.
Steelcase believes it is important to understand that this necessity to rejuvenate the mind shouldn’t simply be reserved for Summer Holidays – it is just as important to maintain the rejuvenation gained through your holiday when you get back to work and should be a reoccurring pattern within your daily routine. By finding a private space to get a fresh perspective; we give ourselves the opportunity to practice mindfulness, to concentrate and to come up with new ideas; taking a moment in solitude can help us re-focus, absorb information and clarify thinking.