Workcations: Productive Concept or Fad of the 24/7 Workweek?

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Last week I was texting with a close friend who was perusing a popular job board. We’ve been chatting about what he is looking for in his next role, what types of organizations he is targeting (mission-driven vs. corporate vs. startup) and what types of benefits and employee perks were enticing. During his search, he mentioned that one organization had “workcation” listed under the benefit and perks offerings. We were both caught off guard by the term because neither of us had seen/heard this word before.

As usual, my curiosity for all things HR won out, so I paused to do a quick Google search to see what was on the interwebs about workcations. The first site to pop up with content on workcations was The Muse, a unique online career resource and community website.* A workcation was exactly what it sounds like – an opportunity to work from a location that you would select as a vacation destination.

After reading the blog post, I started to think about the benefits of a workcation. Was this a brilliant opportunity to encourage team members to work productively outside of the office or was this a well-branded ploy that employers advertise to keep employees accessible around the clock, regardless of their physical location? I decided to compare upside and downside of the workcation concept:

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As you can see, I arrived at more (legitimate) positive reasons to take a workcation than downside. It’s an interesting concept that aids organizations in providing additional work flexibility. It is important to note that a workcation will involve getting buy-in from your manager and you’ll have to discuss and agree upon expectations of your availability and what you’ll be working on in advance to your time away from the office. I do advocate that workcations should not take the place of an actual vacation. You should leverage your vacation as personal time off; get off the grid, unplug from technology and focus on the rest and relaxation you need in order to be healthy, happy and productive when you return to your job.

Do any of you love or loathe the concept of a workcation? I’d love to hear what your organizations are doing.

*I’ve mentioned The Muse on my blog before because it’s an incredible resource for both job seekers and HR professionals to stay current on trends in the job market.
Check out additional resources for planning work group workcations here. More discussion about workcations here and here.













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