Holidays make staff more stressed

The prospect of leaving work is causing employees anxiety and stress, according to research from Investors in People.

Moreover, half of employees report working extra hours in the run up to taking annual leave.

The problem is worst among owner-managers, one in seven of whom say they could work 16 or more hours – the equivalent of about two extra working days – just before a holiday.

When they finally make it on holiday, only half the respondents say they can clear their heads of work. One in ten workers feel guilty about leaving colleagues, and nearly one in six (15 per cent) worry that work might not be done properly in their absence.

The research also found that over a quarter (27 per cent) of workers left in the office experience greater pressure when a colleague is on holiday. Younger employees are more likely to suffer this problem than their older counterparts.

Simon Jones, acting chief executive of Investors in People UK, comments: ‘Holidays should be time to relax – not worry. It’s important that employees have confidence in their employers and their colleagues to handle things effectively whilst they are away, rather than getting stressed or putting in ever-longer hours in the days before they go.’

The survey was conducted by YouGov, who collected responses from 3,471 adults in the UK.

Marc Barber

Marc Barber

Marc was editor of GrowthBusiness from 2006 to 2010. He specialised in writing about entrepreneurs, private equity and venture capital, mid-market M&A, small caps and high-growth businesses.

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