Taking a break from work is serious business because it keeps employees happy and even helps with employers' bottom line, says The Early Edition's workplace psychologist, Dr. Jennifer Newman.

Some employers may think statutory holidays like Family Day hurt their bottom line, but taking time off from work actually increases employees' productivity and makes long-term business sense.

Letting employees spend holidays at home means they will work harder when they are at work, said Newman.

"It is tied to increases in productivity, when we get a chance to recover."

Family-work life balance

Maintaining a good family-work life balance is ultimately good for businesses, because employees spend so much time at the workplace.

"Many people spend more time with co-workers than their families," said Newman.

Businesses would have to pick up the slack if families did not accommodate work needs, she said.

"Families do adjust a lot to accommodate work schedules. If they didn't do that, businesses would do that and successful employers know that."

Jennifer Newman

Workplace psychologist Jennifer Newman says many people spend more time with colleagues than their own families. (Jennifer Newman )

Having a employer who is supportive and sympathetic to the needs of employees' families is also key, said Newman.

"They help their staff through the death of their families, loved ones, divorces, sick kids, terminal illness diagnoses, suicides, they see it all. The whole workplace ends up pulling together whenever you have this kind of situation."

Employees may even leave the company if they feel their boss does not take the time to understand their family life, said Newman.

"Caring for workers and their families together, doesn't hurt the bottom line. I think not taking workers' families into consideration, hurts it."

Can employees take advantage of family policies?

Newman says employees who try to take advantage of a company's time-off or family policies have more serious problems to worry about. Business owners should focus on finding out why the employee is lying.

"You're not going to solve problems of dishonesty by being unfriendly to families," said Newman.

"In that situation it's just best to focus on what's making the staff person believe that lying to their employer is a good idea in that circumstance."


To listen to the full audio, click the link labelled: Workplace psychologist Jennifer Newman on taking time off work.