New research reveals that far from relieving stress and helping workers stay fresh throughout the year, holidays may actually contribute to increased stress among employees in the UK.
A survey conducted by Investors in People shows that more than half (51 per cent) of workers actually work extra hours before taking annual leave, with roughly the same number admitting to thinking about work while on holiday.
Meanwhile, almost one in ten of all respondents said they feel guilty about leaving colleagues at work and one in six feel stressed that work would not be properly carried out in their absence.
These findings suggest that holidays are a key cause of stress for workers who are anxious about their roles in a given company. Simon Jones of Investors in People argues that workers should have the confidence to go on holiday with peace of mind.
"It's important that employees have confidence in their employers and their colleagues to handle things effectively whilst they are away, rather than getting stressed or putting in ever-longer hours in the days before they go," he said.
Changes are currently being implemented seeking to increase the minimum holiday entitlement to 4.8 weeks as of October 1st, rising to 5.6 weeks in April 2009.