Take a Vacation in 2021: We all Need to Get Away!

As business owners we have plenty of excuses why we won’t allow ourselves to take a vacation for any extended length of time. Perhaps you fall into one of these categories of business ownership:

  1. The Indispensable Owner: The work won’t get done without me.
  2. The Pleaser Person: Clients will be upset if I go away.
  3. The Essential Owner: Opportunities to pick up new business will be missed.
  4. The Simple Owner: I am just too busy.
  5. And the classic Paranoid Owner: What would happen if there is a crisis?

More likely there’s multiple types that apply. I confess that all of them have applied to me at one time or another in my professional career. It’s too common for owners to get absorbed by their business ventures and not get away. I challenge you to incorporate vacations into your business plans. The payoff will be tremendous for you and the other stakeholders in your business.

Here is my top-ten list of reasons why owners should make taking a vacation a mission for the summer 2021

#10 Avoid Burnout. If your mental gas tank is running on empty your business will eventually suffer. Time away gives you a chance to refill your tank.

#9A Give your Staff Room to Grow. Are your managers and staff members comfortable making decisions without you? Taking time off and not making yourself accessible to make decisions remotely allows managers to grow within their position.  Better yet, requiring managers to follow your lead for their own teams will develop confidence at all levels of your organization.

#9B Lead by Example. If you don’t take a vacation, what example are you setting for your team?

#8 Enhance Creativity. Down time fosters new thinking and creativity. Vacations set the stage for letting ideas flow while you’re away and after you return to your business.

#7 Learn from Others. Vacations give you time to speak to new people, see new things, or curl up with a new book. Stepping away from the daily routine gives you all sorts of new possibilities to gain perspective that you will not get if you are glued to your work desk.

#6 Family Time is Quality Time. A planned vacation enables an owner to spend quality time focused on the family. Children grow up quickly. You cannot take a raincheck when it comes to spending precious time with them during their most impressionable and developmental years.    

#5 Alone Time or a Date-Night is a Must. Take a walk alone, with your earphones on, listening to your favorite music. Even better, turn your phone off while you are walking. And enjoy a nice dinner out or a concert on the beach with your significant other. Most restaurants totally lifted their Covid restrictions and social activities are finally returning to normal.   

#4 Gain Perspective on Your Business — and Appreciation for Your Life. Getting away enables you to step back, think about what you’re doing, why you’re doing it, and what really matters to you and your business.

#3 No Regrets. – The late Paul Tsongas who was a Senator from Massachusetts once said “Nobody on his deathbed ever said ‘I wish I had spent more time at the office’. We all deserve to live the life we love. Vacations allow you to think about what makes you happy and what constitutes meaningful work.

#2 Do it for Your Health. – It has been proven that taking time to relax is good for your mental and physical wellbeing.

#1 Increase the Value of Your Company. Perhaps the biggest residual benefit for an owner who gets away, if you are contemplating selling your business at some point, ask yourself if your company could run just as efficiently without you there. Then go on vacation for a longer period of time and get the real answer. Taking a vacation gives you a real opportunity to see how your operation runs without you there cracking the whip.

Are you planning on taking a summer vacation? Will you allow yourself to take a real opportunity to recharge your batteries, or will this year’s vacation be more like temporarily moving your “office” to a remote location? It is your choice and the decision you make will have a resounding impact on your business and your life.