I freely admit to my addictions. It is, after all, the first step to overcoming them. Right now, I am addicted to “Little People, Big World.” It’s a show about a family headed up by two little people that airs on TLC. They have four kids, and own a farm in Oregon where they grow pumpkins. When October rolls around, when pumpkins are in high demand, they have a pumpkin festival where people can purchase the bulbous fruits, take tours of the farm and generally meet the family they watch week after week.
The popularity of the festival, like the popularity of the show, has grown from year to year. Last year, since the mother, Amy, has a birthday in early October, the father, Matt, decided to take her on a cruise. This was the first week of their pumpkin festival. He figured that since it was only the first week, and the year before crowds weren’t that bad, that he and Amy could take the cruise.
Oh, how wrong he was.
Crowds were huge, and the staff he left in charge was ill-equipped to handle it. He chose his vacation poorly.
Most businesses have a vacation approval process. Employees must request the time off, which may or may not be approved. The reason is simple, most people want to take off the same time around school holidays and that would leave the business woefully understaffed. Retail stores typically have vacation blackouts set around Christmas, when shoppers pack the stores looking for gifts.
What’s good for the goose is good for the gander. The boss should be just as choosy with his or her own vacation time as with the staff’s. Major events should be the first chunk of time blacked out on the calendar. Bookstores across the nation had an “all hands on deck” policy for the release weekend of the last Harry Potter book.
To be fair and equitable to the staff, the boss should also respect the order in which requests came in. If two other employees scheduled vacations for the week you just picked, then grin and bear it and choose another week. There are plenty of responsibilities that go along with being boss, as well as perks.
The ultimate goal is a smooth running and profitable business, just don’t take, or allow to be taken, any steps that will jeopardize that.
Career “Creature Feature” Writer