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Build in public: Managing time-offs & vacations
Welcome to our newsletter. This is the “build in public” series in which we share our product updates and some inside news.
Every individual needs to disconnect from the hustle-bustle of life and take a much-needed break to ensure good health and well-being; not just of themselves but also of their family and the company.
When the CEO takes a vacation
I have heard that when you start a company; one of the trade-offs is no vacation for you. Well, I am not sure if it is true or not but that is not what this startup is (and will be) doing. Currently, it is only me & Minal (we are married) who overlook the work produced by the dev team. So it becomes challenging when we need to go on a vacation. So how do we do it?
First of all, we have made our developers very self-sufficient by providing them with the necessary tools, training, and automation. We have a strong backlog of items and all future sprints are ready.
We plan our vacations months in advance and a few weeks before our vacation, we set up some extra time to go over each and every item in depth that will be completed while we are away. This helps us identify any blockers or dependencies. Once we identify such hurdles we put a plan in place to work them out while we are still here. We also plan for a few extra items that can be taken over in case we run into any blockers while we are on vacation. These backup items are very straightforward mostly bugs. This helps keep the work going and enables us to take a peaceful vacation.
Do we carry laptops with us? Our policy on vacation is not to do any work and when you carry a laptop most of the time you may think of work. So as the proverb goes “out of sight, out of mind”; we mostly do not carry our laptops with us.
When key people take a time-off
We do want to keep the development going; but what happens when the do-ers need a time-off? We follow the same strategy as described above, but me being a full-stack developer helps keep the momentum as a backup person who the team can rely on. And we follow the same policy with the key people being out of the office to not contact them even if something is urgent.
Disconnecting from work is very important. It is like meditation; if someone interrupts you while having meditation you don’t feel the zen similarly when someone interrupts your vacation you don’t feel disconnected. You want the person to come back rejuvenated so they can be super productive.
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