Money as a Motivator: 5 Reasons Millennials Prefer Benefits over Money

As a worker, it’s important to stay up to date on trends in your industry. One trend that is sweeping into businesses far and wide is travel. Traveling is beneficial to your mental and physical health, it boosts productivity, and it leaves you with memories of life-changing experiences. Convincing your boss to invest in travel for you and your coworkers can be a difficult task. Here are five solid arguments you can bring your boss to convince them to offer travel as a benefit at work.
1. Travel Increases Productivity
Well-rested employees work more efficiently and with better accuracy than overworked employees. That’s just a fact. But we aren’t talking about the rest you get from sleep. We’re talking about the rest you get from a vacation. While it may seem counterintuitive, employees who take more time off work get more done overall than employees who work nonstop, thinking it’s getting them ahead.

That’s because vacations combat burnout, a serious condition affecting workers across the world. Burnout is characterized by disengagement, mental exhaustion, and even physical health problems. These can distract people from tasks and lead to an apathetic attitude toward work. When employees don’t care about their work, there is no reason to put in additional effort or try to get ahead. Thus, productivity decreases.

Taking time away from the office to recharge is one of the best ways to boost productivity again. Psychology Today states that 64% of workers returning from vacation feel rested and excited to return to their jobs. 1 Taking a break for vacation will increase productivity and creativity to get you back to work with a better attitude.
2. Travel Improves Mental & Physical Health
When employees are burnt out they can become depressed, irritable, or even disassociated from their work and the company as a whole. Eventually, this can lead to psychosomatic symptoms, which are physical ailments resulting from mental factors such as work stress. While burnout is not an officially recognized mental health diagnosis, the effects of it are easily identified–if you’re paying attention–though not as easily solved.

Conditions such as depression can often be treated with medication and lifestyle changes, but when the real cause of depression is burnout, not a chemical imbalance, medications will not solve the underlying problem. In fact, burnout has such an effect on our mental health that it can permanently change the way our brains function. The Association for Psychological Science says “the chronic psychosocial stress that characterizes burnout not only impairs people’s personal and social functioning, it also can overwhelm their cognitive skills and neuroendocrine systems — eventually leading to distinctive changes in the anatomy and functioning of the brain.”2

Stress not only changes the brain, it can cause disease and illness in the rest of the body. We were not designed to deal with long-term stress. The short-term reaction of our bodies to stressors is to release adrenaline and cortisol to boost focus and reflex. Too much of this, too often, throws off the chemical balance of our bodies, leaving workers open to illness, weight gain, memory loss, and more. Overwork has also been linked to an increased prevalence of heart disease and heart attacks.

The only way to combat these negative physical and mental health effects is to take a break from work that truly allows you to recharge and remove yourself from the source of your stress.
3. Workers Aren’t Taking Enough Vacation
The average European worker gets a guaranteed 20 vacation days or more per year. The average US worker gets only 10 days off per year and that’s if they’re lucky enough to get time off at all. In the United States, one in four workers gets no paid time off and the US is one of only 13 countries that does not federally mandate minimum vacation days. 3 On top of Americans having less vacation time, employees in the US don’t even take off for the time they do have. This has to do with several factors, but workplace pressure is a large contributor.

Thirty-seven percent of employees say they have felt pressured or guilted into not taking time off. 4 This could be because they have a heavy workload to finish, they were given a promise of promotion for outstanding performance, or perhaps they were pressured by coworkers who dread picking up that employee’s work for the time they are away.

Programs like Taab and policies that encourage unlimited or even minimum vacation days will ensure that workers take the time they need to combat burnout and restore their mental and physical health. Over 700,000,000 vacation days went unused last year, costing employers billions of dollars annually. It’s impossible to reap the benefits of travel if employees aren’t actually traveling.
4. It Helps Make the Most of My Vacation Days
It’s not enough for a boss to just offer PTO and expect employees to take advantage. Along with workplace guilt, the planning and additional funds needed to take a vacation bar many people from achieving their dreams and taking restorative time off. That’s why specific programs like Taab were born. Taab is a new way to look at travel. With money from your paycheck out-of-sight and out-of-mind, you can concentrate on planning the perfect trip, not the cost of it. The money that you and your employer contribute goes directly toward travel related expenses like airline tickets, rental cars, and hotels. Offering a travel benefit can help employees overcome the hurdles to taking a vacation.
5. It Produces Loyal Employees
If employees are happy, meaning they have a healthy work/life balance, they are unlikely to leave their jobs. Employee retention is a challenge in every industry, costing companies millions of dollars annually. On average, an employer will spend three to nine months of the employee’s salary on finding, hiring, and training a replacement. For C-level executives, the cost can exceed twice their annual salary.

An office environment that doesn’t encourage vacation time or traveling is not supporting employees in their goal for a proper work/life balance. Employees who do not feel supported by their companies, don’t stick around for long. In fact, 50% of millennials said they would leave a job and even take a pay cut to work for a company that better matches their values.5 By offering travel as a benefit, employers are showing encouragement for their team to achieve the work/life balance that is right for each individual. In a poll of Taab users, 88% of employees who use travel as a benefit reported feeling an increase in loyalty to their employer.

Travel is one of the best benefits a company can offer employees. Not only does it increase productivity, but it also helps combat burnout and other mental and physical health effects. Specific programs like Taab can help boost support for a healthy work/life balance. If you want to get more out of your vacation time, tell your boss about Taab.