Going on holiday? What to prepare before you leave work

Margarita + beach = good!

Margarita + beach + answering work emails = bad

Before you pack your bags, you need to care of business.

It’ll make the process of leaving work and coming back much easier – and keeps work away from your well-deserved rest.

So if you’re taking off in search of sunrays over winter, here’s what you need to keep in mind before you go.

1 Month Before Takeoff:

Block out dates on Outlook/your calendar app. While you’re at it, block out the last two hours of your last day.

You don’t want meetings when you’ve got a million things to organise. You should also block out the first two hours of your first day back (unless you enjoy 9am meetings post-holiday).


1 Week Before Takeoff:

Ask Your Workmates For Travel Tips.

You’ll get heaps of fantastic advice and you’ll remind the office you’re leaving soon.

Start Involving Your Backup.

Start CC-ing the person taking over your workload and begin taking them to your meetings. To be extra organised, involve them a fortnight before.


2 Days Before Takeoff:

Leave A Work-Appropriate Outfit Ready At Home.

If you arrive home late, you may not have time to organise your first day back. Make sure you’re set up before you go.

Looking through closet for clothes

Don’t leave yourself without something to wear when you return home.

The Day Before Takeoff:

Put A Sticky Note On Your Monitor With Your Return Date.

“Is Jane in today?” Many of your colleagues might wander by looking for you, so leaving a note reminds them when they can expect you.

Give Passwords To Your Backup/Manager.

If someone else may need to use your work computer while you’re away, make sure you sign out of Gmail and other sensitive accounts.

If your username isn’t your name (or can’t be tracked back to you), write it on a sticky note rather than emailing it (in case it ends up in the wrong hands).

Set Up Your Out-Of-Office Auto-Reply.

Include your return date, your manager/colleague’s contact details and a mobile number in case of emergency (let your workmates know how you define an ‘emergency’ before you go). Update your voicemail while you’re at it, too.

Closing laptop before leaving for holidays

Ask a colleague to look after your workspace before switching off for your holiday.

Organise Someone To Look After Your Space.

Who will water your plant? Who will be the guardian of your keyboard?

Provide Value To Your Colleagues.

Look around your workspace – can you lend a few things to someone who might use them while you’re away? A nice gesture like that – even just asking – can go a long way.

Lastly, enjoy your holiday! Time away is essential to help you relax and recharge.