This financial planning firm offers each of its 10 full-time
employees a paid, monthlong sabbatical after every five years,
in addition to paid annual vacation. During sabbaticals,
employees are expected to completely disconnect from work.
Staff can bring their babies—up to age 6 months—to the office.
These days, though, the company is seeing more people bring
their dogs to work; any well-behaved pet is allowed.
What’s the idea behind sabbaticals and
how do you make them work?
It’s an idea I got from a financial planning firm in Columbia, S.C.
We started them in 2007 when we had seven employees. At the
time, people were working during their vacations—which is some-
thing we discouraged. But they did it anyway, which led to the idea
of sabbaticals. Unplugging during sabbaticals is not only encour-
aged, it is required.
Most of my team members are Millennials, and this is work-
ing for this age group and older employees. People love it. And
even though you have to work for the firm for five years before you
become eligible, it’s an effective recruitment tool as well.
Planning is key. At review time, we remind employees when
their break is coming up and ask them to think about how they
will use it. We also put the days when someone will be away on
our calendar at the beginning of the year. There are block-out
Kyra Morris, president and owner, certified financial planner
Morris Financial Concepts Inc., Mount Pleasant, S.C.