A recent study found that about 40% of U.S. workers don’t take their vacation days, with many employees saying they are afraid to fall behind on their work.
But while going away on vacation for most of us means coming back to a huge pile of unread emails, the German car manufacturer Daimler has come up with a pretty awesome way to help its employees enjoy their time off without falling behind.
According to the Financial Times, the company announced that its 100,000 German workers will now have the option to automatically delete all of the emails they receive while they’re away. The people who try to reach them will be sent what the company calls a “Mail on Holiday” response letting them know that their message will be deleted and giving them the contact information of a supervisor if it is urgent.
“Our employees should relax on holiday and not read work-related emails,” board member Wilfried Porth told the Financial Times. “With ‘Mail on Holiday’ they start back after the holidays with a clean desk. There is no traffic jam in their inbox. That is an emotional relief.”
The company ran a trial of the “Mail on Holiday” program last year, and found that it helped employees feel happier and more productive in the long run.
While your employer might not be willing to let you delete all of your incoming emails while you’re on vacation, there are other strategies of managing your inbox.
For instance, you might want to set your out-of-office message for an additional day after you get back from your trip, that way you have some time to play catchup without feeling like you need to be responding to incoming messages right away.
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