This post refers to a rule that a surprisingly large number of businesses seem to enforce. If an employee takes annual leave, which they inevitably do for 20+ days of the year, and a client phones up to speak to that employee, the person answering the phone is not allowed to say that they are on annual leave. Instead, they are to say that the employee is in client meetings for the next few days, on training days, or simply ‘away from their desk’.
This seems to me like a ridiculous rule to impose. There is no brand benefit by giving the perception that people never take annual leave. In fact, I think it adds a negative and damages the employer brand. It’s hardly a USP, is it?
A: “So why should we work with you?”
B: “We’re industry leaders, we’ve got the largest team, oh, and we don’t take holidays”
Unless you’re in a role where you need to be on hand 24/7 (in which case you’d probably take your phone away with you), there is very little logic in imposing this rule. Many businesses write holiday notes and hand over to a colleague – this seems like the sensible option and is more that suffice.
Personally, whenever I’ve spoken with a client, colleague or supplier to inform them I am going away on annual leave, they’ve been more than happy to discuss my break and if anything are happy that I’m taking some time off. I hand over to colleagues and put an out of office on, I’ve never had a problem.
Have you worked at a business where this rule is enforced? Do you think this has any benefit to a company’s brand or employer brand?