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Majority of Workers Stay Plugged in During Vacations


We are all guilty of it — sneaking a glance at our work emails, taking a skim at some reports or checking in on analytics, all while we are supposed to be taking a little time off. A new survey from Lee Hecht Harrison says the majority of workers stay plugged in while on vacation.

Only 9 percent of those surveyed said they leave their electronic devices at home to have a completely unplugged vacation. Forty-three percent said they take their laptop, 15 percent said they take a laptop or tablet, and 33 percent said they take all their electronic devices with them on vacation.

“The impact of technology on our lives — at home and at work — can’t be understated,” said Peter Alcide, the president and COO of Lee Hecht Harrison. “Technology will continue to be disruptive. But what we see in the results of our poll is that people are defining for themselves how pervasive a role technology plays.”

Alcide adds that the work-life balance is up to each individual. What is required is for workers and employers to work together to ensure employees aren’t getting burned out and are getting the necessary amount of time away from work. While some need to completely disconnect from work to feel relaxed, others require less from their vacations and tend to get bored in their downtime.

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“What we know is that people are adapting and integrating technology in ways that work for them,” Alcide said. “For some, it may mean staying on top of email while on vacation to reduce stress and avoid being inundated when they return. For others, work is pleasure so they are more likely to find time during a vacation to do some work and connect with the office. And for still others, getting back to nature with no distractions is going to be paramount.

To arrive at these figures, Lee Hecht Harrison conducted an online poll of 639 American workers, asking, “Do you unplug on vacation?”

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We want to hear from you! Do you unplug while on vacation? Share your thoughts on Twitter or in the comments!

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(Photo credit: c lily –

Marissa Brassfield
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