Working 9-5 holds little meaning for Richard Branson’s employees. In his new book, the business magnate announced that his Virgin US and UK staff will now receive unlimited vacation time on the one proviso: they have to get all their work done first.
Branson is open about not being the pioneer behind the policy; the billionaire admits he was inspired by similar measures which were introduced at Netflix HQ, allowing full time employees to take time off at their own leisure without needing approval or having their hours tracked.
Certainly, technology has played a part in making these new measures possible, but Branson firmly believes that the primary focus should be the completion of work, not office hours clocked.
But it is clearly stipulated that staffers only take time off “when they feel one hundred percent comfortable that they and their team are up to date on every project and that their absence will not in any way damage the business – or, for that matter, their careers.”
Experts warn that the new policy, which has been embraced by successful startups like Foursquare and Tumblr, can have positive and negative outcomes. But interestingly, the measures haven’t seen a notable spike in staff holiday leave.