For full-time employees, the idea of a sabbatical is alien to them. An additional one month off from standard two weeks of yearly vacation is not a viable thought for them. It is understood that we can’t take a vacation any time we want. That’s why a sabbatical is not on the radar for an overwhelming majority even today.
It doesn’t matter if you are a student or an employee looking for some inspiration or simply some time out from the hectic schedule, a sabbatical can work for you. But exactly how? Look at the example of how Bill Gates has used the vacations to innovate and come up with new ideas.
As the chairman of Microsoft, especially during the final years, Bill Gates used to take a sabbatical every year for two separate weeks. The location was a secret as he fancied the woods somewhere in the Pacific Northwest. He used this time to read the ideas pitched by employees concerning innovation and a groundbreaking change in how products and services work. He called it the “Think Week.”
Sabbatical in Professional Life
A sabbatical from work, especially for a long duration, is not something that entices us. Employees think about their workload, what they want to achieve at the end of the year (mostly promotion and increment in salary). A sabbatical is not in their plan of action and this line of thought is evident by the fact that very few people take leaves each year.
By using a productivity enhancement tool like TaskQue, you can easily set up recursive tasks. For people on a sabbatical, this feature can work for their team effectively for many weeks without fail.
The Positive Aspects of Taking a Sabbatical
A recent study in the “Journal of Applied Psychology” found some facts that people who are thinking about sabbatical will find interesting. Burnout, stress, and negativity can be greatly reduced if people can take holidays and completely disconnect from work. The use of technology, especially smartphones, reduces the revitalizing effects of a sabbatical, that’s why avoiding them is a must.
According to the same research, a sabbatical can enhance the productivity of employees as they return to work with a fresh mind and vigor. The recommendation from a study for the companies is to offer their star performers a sabbatical and leave them alone for the entire duration so that they can thoroughly enjoy the time out.
Top Benefits of Sabbatical
A sabbatical can be more than a long break. Isn’t simply a matter of taking long naps all day but recharging your batteries so that as a worker, you can benefit greatly.
A Major Career Shift
Taking a long break can make you think hard about what career choices you have in the long term, and are you heading in the right direction. You can utilize your sabbatical to learn a new skill. For example, you can learn more about cryptocurrencies or expand your understanding of data science and natural language processing if you think that they are the future and can benefit you professionally.
Go for an Adventure Ride
You can use your sabbatical for that vacation you are dreaming for some years now. You can some quality time in the Amazon rainforests in Brazil and enjoy nature at its purest. Or you can visit the Alps in the heart of Europe and enjoy the snowy locations. You can use your sabbatical any way you want and have the time of your life.
Improve your Health
A stressful year at the workplace is a reason alone for going for a sabbatical. Sleeping and eating disorders are two common traits that employees face as they work hectically from morning till night in a bid to impress their managers. With a long sabbatical, this can be considerably improved.
You can do something that you can’t do while you are on the job. For example, you can relocate to a bigger city where you can find more opportunities. Even you can move to a new country if you have taken a long sabbatical from work and try your luck.
While there are great benefits that you can get after going for a sabbatical, you need to be prepared for it well in advance. If you are planning for a break for six months or a whole year, there are chances that you will be pressed for choices in your life as your financial health will be slim. But you can always benefit from a well-planned sabbatical.
Prepare Well in Advance
Adding to the previously discussed point. You can’t just wake up one day and go for a sabbatical in the morning. You have to plan well in advance. Focus on what you need to start a sabbatical; that’s why a period of at least 1-2 weeks is advised. This will enable you to be completely prepared for the break. Use a feature like converting to-do into tasks so that any important work or task due for the future won’t be hampered by your absence.
Make Sure You’re Covered at Work
When you are working in a crucial/senior position, there are a lot of scenarios where your colleagues have a dependency associated with your tasks. In this case it imperative that you make arrangements for someone who will cover for you in your stead. Temporarily assigning additional responsibilities to a peer or a replacement is what you need. Or you can delegate your duties to your able subordinates too. This will also give them a chance to learn and grow. So, devote enough time to this activity before you say adios amigos!
Solo Flight or a Group Adventure?
That’s an important scenario that leaves many people puzzled. You can go on a sabbatical alone or can take a friend or family member along with you. But don’t force anyone here as they may be busy in their routine life and happy with it. Not everyone will be content enough to go with you for a wild ride of 3 months, for example. You have to ask yourself if a solo journey sounds more interesting to you or you like someone to give you company.
An important factor here is that you need to make sure you can afford the sabbatical. If you even have a little doubt in mind, don’t be hesitant in your approach. Try to solve the problem by finding a favorable solution for you and your employer. Don’t take the financial aspect lightly as it can make the proceedings difficult for you in the long run. Freelancing and part-time jobs are two solutions, but that will take the sheen away from what a sabbatical truly is.
Over to you
There are many features like, Queue Management, which can help companies managing the sabbatical of their employees better. This particular feature works as any team can set up their threshold, e.g., three or five tasks in a day, and as soon as they are done, other tasks will automatically be assigned to them. This results in eliminating any dependency on you so that your presence is not required during your sabbatical.
In the end, I would love to get honest feedback from my readers as to what they think about sabbatical and if they would like to try it. You can also share your experiences or ask me any questions concerning this topic or anything discussed here. Please use the comments section below to get in touch with me.