The Leaveism problem

2 Mins

You’ve probably heard of absenteeism and presenteeism. There’s another ‘ism’ on the rise in UK workplaces too—leaveism.

Presenteeism is the problem of people turning up to work when they shouldn’t, such as when they’re ill. Absenteeism is when workers don’t show up to work beyond the normal reasons. But ‘leaveism’ is when staff work when they’re ill, use up annual leave to catch up on work, or continue to work when they’re on holiday.

Sound familiar? For some, the need to clear an in-tray backlog when you’re supposed to be sunbathing by a pool is too great to ignore.

An annual Health and wellbeing at work survey by CIPD recently released their 2022 report and found 55% of employees work outside contracted hours to get work done. And two-thirds of HR respondents were aware of leaveism in their organisation but just 30% had taken steps to tackle it.

One reason this may be an issue is the increase in remote working and digital accessibility blurring home and work boundaries, making it harder to ‘switch off’ from work. It may also come from pressure from management keen on seeing productivity to ever-tightening budgets.

Time off from work is essential for your mental and physical wellbeing and you have a right to your leisure time. It’s not self-indulgent to use this time for yourself.

So, if you’re planning your annual leave, make sure you plan to use it to properly relax! 

 Are you good at separating work from home and holidays?