We spend most of the winter months dreaming of sipping cocktails by the swimming pool, but when the times comes to pack the sunscreen, we are usually in a mad rush trying to get everything done at work before we jet off.
But by preparing ahead, you can avoid any last minute panics and ensure you leave the office with a clear head ready for a stress free week in the sun:
Get it in the diary
Before you even book your holiday, check with your boss if it coincides with any future plans for major meetings or work events that you can’t miss. As soon as your holiday is booked, add it to your work diary, so that you can’t accidentally book any important meetings whilst you’re supposed to be relaxing on the beach.
Set your priorities
A few weeks in advance, make a list of which tasks need to be accomplished before you leave, as well as any deadlines finishing as soon as you return. Discuss these with your boss so that they are aware of when you’ll be completing which tasks, and which ones need to be delegated to colleagues.
Make sure you have enough time to complete the tasks you said you would. This may mean a few late nights in the office, but it will all be worth is when you don’t have to be worrying about them on the beach. Make sure your colleagues are fully briefed about any work they covering for you whilst your away. If necessary, prepare some hand over notes for them to refer to.
Make sure colleagues and clients are aware you are going away. This depends on your job, but sending a quick email the day before you leave informing them of the dates you’re away ensures that they won’t be trying to contact you until you return. Also make sure you set an out of office response so that anyone you haven’t already informed, won’t expect an immediare response. If you are expected to still pick up emails whilst you’re away, try and find out whether there will be phone signal or wifi where you’re going and inform your boss of how contactable you’ll be.
Prepare for your return
We all hate post-holiday blues, but do as much as you can before you go to ensure the return goes smoothly. Make a list of all your tasks which needs doing when you’re back. Give your desk a tidy so that you’re not coming back to a chaotic mess. Hand over any important files to colleagues who may need them, or at least make them aware of where they are kept on your desk.