Who Are You Taking on Holiday This Year?

by Neville Gaunt, Featured Contributor

YOU’VE GOT UP extra early before anyone else for some ‘me time’ before the long journey ahead. This is the holiday of a lifetime for all the family – the kids are so excited they haven’t stopped talking about it for what seems like months, while you both have been equally excited but hiding your real emotions until the holiday starts.

The day has come! As you sit outside in the sunshine with your favourite breakfast, a double expresso and a croissant, your mind starts to drift… and then you remember what happened last time you left the office for a holiday. It was like a car crash!…

TravelOn the journey to the airport you’d had two calls to the office and shouted at your overly excited kids to keep quiet while you’re on the phone to the office. At the airport check-in you have excess baggage, thanks to your small PC and all its cables and accessories plus the important papers you need for the two conference calls while you are away, that of course only you can handle.

You successfully negotiated border control and customs, although because of your PC, phones and all your other gadgets the security scanners picked you (they would wouldn’t they?)and that held you back while everyone else had gone through without a hitch.

As a treat for everyone you’d booked the whole family into one of the air lounges so they can see what first class travel is all about. Meanwhile, you have three more calls with the office and the last one almost makes you late for the flight!

It was a 6 hour flight with no phones so just enough time for you to relax, settle down and start your holiday. The time flew by and as you are getting off the plane the phone rings…”Boss, well it’s like this and it’s a real problem…”

“Hey” you shout out as the kids, now wide awake and raring to go saw you were dozing off so they sprayed some very cold water on your face.

“Thank goodness for that, I must’ve been dreaming…” you think to yourself as this time you know it’s going to be a lot different. You vowed after the last holiday, you wouldn’t let a car crash happen again. You’d reached a tipping point and you changed your attitude and mindset – more of mindset shift for you. It began with you, starting to get to know your team and trust them. It may not have been easy at the time but what you did:

Engaged with each of your team

Built trust and a team ethic

Gave them space and time to grow

Delegated so you weren’t ‘needed’

Planned their and your holiday cover

And a whole lot more as you found it comes easy when you allow yourself time to think and plan ahead.

So who are you taking away with you this year? This was me some time ago, don’t let it be you.


Neville Gaunt
Neville Gaunt
NEVILLE is the Chief Executive Officer of Mind Fit a private global consultancy focused on developing ‘can do’ people with winning minds. Mind Fit has divisions specialising in business, performance coaching, education and sports. He is an experienced finance professional with a highly successful background in international oil & gas at both strategic and operational levels. His extensive international experience includes small and large companies, public and private sectors with a proven record of optimising financial and commercial outcomes through a combination of original thinking, pragmatism and a determination to get results. He writes regularly on leadership, talent management, business development, advice for young people and recruitment with features in TeamPlayer360 (UK recruitment newspaper) and various websites like AskTheExperts. In his spare time, he’s an active spokesperson for small businesses, governor at school academies and outspoken on giving young people the employability skills they need so they can succeed in the workplace. His slogan is “making common sense your common practice” as business is simple it’s people that make it complicated.

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  1. Wonderful post Neville, and very relevant for so many professionals. I have certainly been there many years ago myself. I was baking Christmas cookies with our children when they were little and a business call came in….I had promised the kids I wouldn’t be working that day, but “just had to” take this call. Our daughter started crying and said “mommy you promised”. That was my wakeup and it never happened again….that was over 20 years ago.

    I am very grateful I woke up because I would have missed the incredible memories and journey of raising our kids. I have also learned that down time is vitally important to recharge ourselves. We cannot keep continuing at a high level pace if we are not allowing ourselves time to recharge. It is actually counter productive to stay plugged in all the time. I have also found that some of my best ideas have come when I am totally unplugged and not thinking about work.