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chelle21689's avatar

Is it selfish if I request vacation time with family if it's during a busy time at work?

Asked by chelle21689 (6675points) 1 week ago from iPhone

I rarely ever use any of my vacation days. My sister and her husband are planning a big family trip to Cabo for their birthdays in August.

One problem is that this is during my busiest time of year for my role where I prepare to issue hundreds of contracts for faculty and also it lands on a Friday where I do orientation day. Basically I have a ton of guest speakers from different departments talk. I don’t do anything other than introduce them. Orientation is 4 hours. We only do two orientation days per year which makes no sense because employees there for 6 months will be attending; so we are actually trying to do away with it by doing an electronic interactive onboarding orientation. We have started planning with IT but not sure if it’ll be complete by that time, we doubt it.

I’m sure they can work it out if I do even get it off. My coworker was in my role for 7 years before being promoted. Plus my boss and her have held several orientations in the past so it’s not like no one can do it.

I can’t ask my sister to push it back because other employees have time off other days and I can’t have her plan for later because I am going back to school for my MBA.

I really want to go and everyone else is. But I would feel bad leaving work when it gets pretty busy.

Is it bad if I even try requesting time off?

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40 Answers

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

Not a problem if you gave warning that family Is first when you applied for the job. What is the understanding between you and your boss? Best to give your boss plenty warning to hire a temp for your leave.

janbb's avatar

All you can do is ask. They may say no. But it doesn’t hurt to ask and to lay out the reasons why you want that specific time off. It doesn’t look bad to ask; however, you should probably acknowledge in your request that you know it is a busy time.

jca's avatar

One thing I’m learning as I get older is that life is short, and we have to take these opportunities when they arise. You only go around once. Ask for the vacation, explain that your family planned it and it’s a family reunion (which is what it is, essentially).

I’ve felt bad taking time off for certain things but I’ve found that my bosses that I’ve had over the years will generally understand that family time is important and we’re not robots.

My mom died this past year and I would love the chance to take another trip with her to Cape Cod, or a day trip shopping, even. You never know what life holds in store, so go for it.

chelle21689's avatar

@jca wow, I didn’t think of it that way, you’re right. My mom’s close friend just diagnosed with cancer passed away quickly last week and it made me think. I don’t ever have the opportunity for family vacations.

snowberry's avatar

Try phrasing it like this, so it’s clear you’re not trying to manipulate. “Would it be possible to…?”

jca's avatar

@chelle21689: What’s the procedure where you work, to put in for vacation? Do you put it in the computer system? Do you send an email? Do you have a discussion?

chelle21689's avatar

I submit it on paper to her. I always have a discussion with her though.

chelle21689's avatar

My main concern is orientation day having someone have to present for me. Literally bough, it use to be my boss’s role before passing it down to my role before I was ever hired. Literally you welcome the group and introduce each guest speaker and have lunch.

snowberry's avatar

Gosh, @chelle21689 I could do that.

chelle21689's avatar

But it just takes up a lot of time

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

All you can do is ask @chelle21689. Can you talk to the person who will approve your leave to explain why you need the time and that you realise it’s not the best timing for them? Perhaps they can bring in a casual to help?

chelle21689's avatar

That wild be my boss. She’s understanding, so I think more than likely she will let me but I guess I’m worried if it reflects poorly on me and my priorities although family is important.

jca's avatar

@chelle21689: The boss will hopefully understand that it’s an important family event. It’s not like you are taking time off that can be scheduled at some other time.

jca's avatar

If worse comes to worse, maybe since Orientation is on a Friday, you can do the Orientation and then leave Friday night or Saturday morning for vacation.

janbb's avatar

@chelle21689 As @Earthbound_Misfit , @jca and I have said, it will not look bad if you ask as long as you indicate you know it is a busy time and you wouldn’t ask if there weren’t another option.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

None of us is indispensable. If you were sick they would find a way to cope with you not being there. Just make sure you do as much as you can to ensure your work is complete and ready to go. Let your boss know what you will do. “I’ll make sure all the seating plans/lists (whatever you need to organise in advance) are ready to go on the day”. If you explain and show you do understand this isn’t the best time to be on leave, I wouldn’t expect people to feel badly about your request. They should know you don’t take time off and are reliable and responsible.

chyna's avatar

Ask! Ask! If you can’t go, I will!

Tropical_Willie's avatar

True story I worked with a guy many years ago. at a large manufacturing company. He was the supervisor of two other supervisors and each of the other supervisors had 9 people that worked for them. He had been with the company for almost 8 years. One of the other supervisor in another department told me ,“Billy hasn’t take a vacation for the last five years.” It made me think What the heck !. The following year Billy’s wife divorced him (I think i know why). Billy started dating someone new about 14 months after he was divorced. I heard the second, now wife put her foot down. “You will take a vacation each year WITH ME!” That was the story I heard from the second wife’s brother, who I later worked with in a different plant and facility.

@chelle21689 that your vacation, it is yours to enjoy and should be with family. Include the family aspect with your request for the dates.

gondwanalon's avatar

Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

Should be no problem to request time off. Just be prepared to have that request denied.

stanleybmanly's avatar

Anything should be solvable with 3 months notice. in 3 months you could train your dog to meet people and shake hands! The best course is to ask now to give your employer the longest lead time possible.

Patty_Melt's avatar

If you were new, you should worry. In your case though, they must know by now you are an asset, and worth the shuffle.

jca's avatar

Good point by @stanleybmanly. You’re asking now, you’re giving them plenty of notice to prepare.

AshlynM's avatar

No, it’s not.

JLeslie's avatar

I would ask.

When I got married it was during our busiest time at work, and so I didn’t do my honeymoon right away, and I regret it. I didn’t even ask for the time off to see if it would get approved. I’m pretty sure in retrospect they would have given me the time off. At the next level higher than me they were forced to take comp days during that time (I learned that once I was at that level). I gave them too much of my life.

chelle21689's avatar

Thank you again everyone. Doesn’t hurt to ask. I would regret not asking. At least I tried if it does get denied. Definitely will include the family aspect lol.

Darth_Algar's avatar

Your employer doesn’t own you. You’re entitled to use the vacation time you’ve earned and you will have given them ample time to adjust for your absence.

ucme's avatar

No, family comes first always!!
All work & no play makes Jack a dull boy…so true.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@AshlynM how much notice would you recommend?

chyna's avatar

@stanleybmanly I think Ashley is answering the OP as to ” is it being selfish…”

stanleybmanly's avatar

Thanks. It’s stuff like this that leaves me wondering whether I will still be fluthering when my wife and kids commit me to the rest home.

chyna's avatar

I hope you will!

stanleybmanly's avatar

I dunno. I completely missed the fact that @AshlynM might be answering the OP, and true to the dictates of advancing senility decided that “It’s all about me”.

chelle21689's avatar

Couldn’t ask my boss. She got let go today, the new president seems to be cleaning house and I am shocked! =\ One VP after another VP and now on to the Directors all gone and bringing in her “people”. I guess a new boss coming in would be a bad time to ask.

janbb's avatar

@chelle21689 That’s happening at the college I just left too. Maybe there’s someone else higher up you can ask? Or you could just schedule it and tell the new boss you had scheduled it already but in such a volatile work place you could be risking your job. You may have to decide what’s more important to you.

Patty_Melt's avatar

Damn! That sure puts a sour twist to things.

chelle21689's avatar

And then I just found out my grandma passed right after that. Nothing like life to kick us when we are down. Lost my boss who was the best boss I’ve had and I feel like with everyone let go I’m next.

janbb's avatar

^^ Oh boy – that is rough! Sorry to hear that.

si3tech's avatar

@chelle21689 IMHO it is not selfish at all. I hope your boss will take a positive attitude and wish you well on your vacation with your family. God Bless!

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

Oh, I’m sorry for your losses @chelle21689, both your grandma and your liked boss. Do you know the person who has taken over? Can you broach the subject with them? Say you want to see if it’s possible before you put in a formal application. Again, focus on the whole family is getting together for family birthdays that are taking place around the same time and perhaps to celebrate the life of your grandma. As @Darth_Algar and @Tropical_Willie both said, you are owed vacation time. You’re not asking for something you aren’t entitled to. The problem is what’s happening when you’re away. So ignore the changes above you and have a word with the person who will be making such decisions now and, if it were me, I’d explain that I realise they are probably very busy dealing with the transition right now, but you want to make sure you give plenty of notice that you will be away if it’s possible.

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