Our Toronto executive recruitment team shares the latest insights, tips and tricks to help you hire the right leaders for the right opportunities.


How to (really) disconnect on vacation

Disconnect on vacation

Disconnecting from work while on vacation sounds a lot easier than it actually is. 

Many of us feel we need to stay connected, respond to emails or attend meetings to keep projects moving forward. But research shows that taking time off (as in, completely disconnecting from work) is critical to lowering burnout, increasing engagement and improving health and well-being, which ultimately leads to better productivity. Here are three tips to help you truly unplug this summer, so you can come back refreshed and ready to do your best work yet.   

Make a plan.

Be clear with your manager and colleagues that you’ll be unavailable during your time off. Write down a plan to cover your absence, including who the point of contact is while you are away, who will deal with any emergencies or urgent requests, and who will make sure key deliverables are met. The more you collaborate with your team to prepare for vacation, the less stressed they (and you) will be about coverage — and the more likely you’ll be to enjoy your time off uninterrupted.


Send pre-notices for standing meetings.

Don’t just decline standing meetings the week of your vacation. Let the people who run those meetings know you won’t be there and ask if they need anything from you before you leave. This shows you’re responsible to your partners and gives you an opportunity to let them know you won’t be available. 


Maximize your out-of-office notifications.

Most people can’t leave their job and not have someone else pick up their work or respond to emergencies. It’s critical to be clear in your out-of-office messages who is covering for you. Make sure the wording is firm but professional, indicating you will have no access to email until the date you return. If you’re soft on your message, like saying you’ll be “slow to respond,” your colleagues will expect you to respond. Include contact information for each person who will be responding to any inquiries on your behalf while you’re away. And if you use Slack, Google or Teams Chat, provide the same information in your status there as well.

(Source: HBR)


Not sure where to start? We can help.

At South End Partners, our Toronto executive recruiters work with large and small organizations across industries (from technology, to supply chain, to sales and operations) to help them find the right leaders for the right opportunities using an objective, data driven approach.

We also provide comprehensive HR consulting services including onboarding support, interview coaching and training, and strategies to develop your superstar teams.

Reach out to find out how we can help you today!