The Holiday Excuse

Welcome to the last 45 days of the years when employees and managers everywhere are unable to make decisions and implement squat “because the holidays make it too difficult.”  Whether you are external to a company, or internal to your own company, the Holiday Excuse is an annual reason to stop working while they get paid.

People take vacations throughout the entire year and we have holidays throughout the year too.  And it is important to note they are holiDAYS not WEEKS, so why is it so easy to pop off this excuse and it is acceptable?

I’ve always been a financial hawk when it comes to expenses.  When you are paying an employee a salary and they are not working, you are paying money for low to no productivity.  Not to mention, that if these decisions involve a vendor, the end of the year is the very best time to crack a deal.  Come January, the deals disappear! 

From the company’s perspective, they have written a payroll check, and got nothing in return.  They then get to pay even more money for a product in the following year because the employees they have on staff couldn’t fit into their busy schedule a decision during the last 45 days of the month.

I fault the leadership of the company that uses the Holiday Excuse for low productivity.  If management would require the same level of productivity all year long they would get the same return on their spring and summer investments.

As this blog is about the training function, it appalls me when I hear training stop during this time of year.  Learning is a constant, so why does it stop during the holidays?  Learning Leaders should be negotiating deals to stretch their limited training budgets, not waiting until the next year to do less training because it cost more.

And here is a novel concept.  Instead of cutting jobs, how about we focus on the people we have on staff to do the job we are paying them to do 365 days a year.  Well of course, minus weekends, vacation days, holidays, sick days, and any week or month with a holiday in it.


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