- Daily Zen
Nike decides a paid week off for employees to release stress.
Sportswear giant Nike has given its staff in the United States the week off to recover their mental health and “destress” after the pressures of the coronavirus pandemic.
The time off is for its staff in its Oregon headquarters.
“It’s not just a ‘week off’ for the team… It’s an acknowledgement that we can prioritize mental health and still get work done,” Matt Marrazzo, a senior manager at Nike, said in a message on his LinkedIn page.
“Take the time to unwind, destress and spend time with your loved ones. Do not work,” the post reads.
Nike already participates in flexible “Summer Hours.” At Nike, Summer Fridays last from Memorial Day to Labor Day, where the company shuts down at noon on Fridays.
Summer Fridays help increase productivity and boost employee morale. In fact, according to a study by Opinion Research Corporation, 66% of those surveyed felt more productive due to the summer hours policy at their companies. Nike actively propagates work-life balance.
Thus, new move to prioritize the mental health of the company’s staff is also a way to encourage people to come back rejuvenated. And as many studies have proven, the more a company shows it cares, it promotes loyalty and better productivity at work.
The World Health Organization (WHO) found in a 2020 study that the Covid-19 pandemic disrupted and halted critical mental health services in 93 per cent of countries worldwide while the demand for mental health is increasing.
Many businesses have given extra time off to their employees to tackle the additional pressure of the pandemic, the economic uncertainty and the added disruption to schedules from remote work. In April, the professional networking site LinkedIn gave its workers worldwide an entire week off at the same time so they could recharge and avoid sending work emails to each other.
Teuila Hanson, LinkedIn’s chief people officer, said: “We wanted to make sure we could give them something really valuable, and what we think is most valuable right now is time for all of us to collectively walk away”.
Dating app Bumble also gave all 700 of its employees an extra week of paid leave to switch off in June.
In March, the global investment bank Citigroup banned video calls on Friday to help employees break free from the “relentlessness of the pandemic workday”. The bank also designated 28 May as a company-wide holiday, which is called “Citi reset day”. The company has a policy to encourage its employees to take time off from work periodically.
For many working from home during the pandemic, the blurring of home and work life has also increased the risk of burnout. Doctors diagnose someone with burnout if they show symptoms of exhaustion, lacking motivation, and anxiety, among others.
According to research by Deloitte, burnout can “negatively impact worker health and the capacity for both work output and ability to learn and develop at the necessary pace”.