Are 1-2 days holidays enough?

In the aftermath of Mr Narayan Murthy's recent advocacy for a robust 70-hour work week (read my post on this here) and keeping in line with this week’s Diwali festivities, let’s look at the latest comment from a C-suite executive relating to working hours.

A couple of days ago, Radhika Gupta, Edelweiss Mutual Fund MD and CEO posted a message on X saying that “In all my years living in the West, holiday season was long and extended…..unfortunately in India, Diwali holidays are usually 1 or 2 days in corporate offices… there a care for longer festive break, maybe a week long one…..”

Being someone extensively involved with American and European peers, I can't help but marvel at the prolonged breaks they enjoy, especially during summer and Christmas. More significantly, it's their ability to seamlessly disengage during these breaks—a facet where many of us in India often find ourselves tethered to work even on holidays - that I envy more!

What's your take on Radhika Gupta's proposition? Should Corporate India champion the cause for extended breaks? Do you believe such breaks could serve as a rejuvenating force, translating into heightened productivity upon return? Could they pave the way for stronger connections with friends and family, ultimately enhancing overall well-being? In endorsing extended breaks alongside a formidable work ethic, are Radhika Gupta and Narayan Murthy channelling the timeless wisdom of "work hard, play hard"? (Do leave your comments below)

In a landscape reshaped by the seismic impact of Covid, one thing remains certain—perspectives have evolved, and discussions around work-life balance are now part of mainstream discourse. As we anticipate further contributions to this evolving narrative, it wouldn't be surprising to see more corporate leaders lending their voices to this dynamic conversation.

In the meantime, here are some quick tips to enjoy our holidays “productively” so that we too may return to our roles, teams and firms rejuvenated and full of creative ideas to help us Shoot to the Top!

  1. Maintain the same sleep cycle (sleep and wake-up time) during the holidays
  2. Continue your daily fitness routine, eat healthy and keep yourself hydrated
  3. Set a “away/vacation responder” on your work email account
  4. Also, keep an “away/vacation” responder typed out in any kind of notes app and use it to respond to your workplace contacts (via SMS, WhatsApp etc) if you don’t want to pick up calls during your holidays
  5. As much as possible inform your colleagues, customers etc in advance that you will be on vacation between the said dates and that they may expect a delay in response

Most importantly, do not feel guilty about your break and for having fun! 😀