If Playboy Can Give Up Nudity, You Can Toss An Outdated Vacation Policy

“I only read it for the articles” may soon be true for Playboy fans!

Playboy has officially announced it will be PG-13 as of 2016 and no longer print nude pictures of women.

As CNN reports: “This isn’t a story about nudity; it’s a story about disruption and innovation. Times, tastes and technology have changed everything. Even at 89, Hugh Hefner understands a simple fact: In today’s rapidly evolving world, you innovate or you become irrelevant. It’s the biggest challenge facing businesses around the world.”

Bottom (ha!) line: You can get all the nude pictures you want on the Internet—for free.

Playboy, the publisher, understands that if they truly want people to read their articles, their format has to be web and work friendly. And guess what? The top source to push traffic to the Playboy website is social media—the likes of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram—none of whom allow nudity.

How is the new no-nudity policy at Playboy related to your vacation policy?

Innovate or you become irrelevant. How much clearer can the grotto water be?

We have an unlimited PTO policy at hrQ.  We encourage employees to take time when they need it—whether it’s to be at a kid’s soccer game or to take a week in Cozumel. We also offer a month paid sabbatical after 5 years of service… to do whatever!

WorldatWork reports only around 2% of companies are as cool as hrQ and have adopted this type of program, yet we are hearing more and more about organizations contemplating a change. Just last week, Linkedin announced it was moving to this model, which is significant given they are close to 9,000 employees spread across the globe. It’s also significant as it’s a clear signal Linkedn needs to be able to compete for talent alongside all the other tech companies who have already decided to innovate.

How could your outdated vacation policy make you irrelevant? I have too many examples of companies losing out on talent over vacation time. Recently, a company who had previously lost FOUR total rewards candidates at offer lost their fifth.

Yep.  Over 1 week of vacation.

“Sorry top-notch total rewards candidate. At our company you can only accrue 2 weeks of vacation per year until you hit your 5-year anniversary. We don’t care what you currently have or that it’s really a no-brainer to give you an extra week. And yes, we know as a total rewards professional you’ll probably NEVER get the chance to use it anyway!”

Watch out. DINOSAUR CROSSING.

Here’s the deal. You can make an unlimited policy work even if you’re not based in California.  If you’re not ready for that leap, how about applying some critical thinking skills when it comes to snagging top talent? Giving an extra week—or gasp, even two—isn’t going to break the bank or send you to inconsistent policy jail. And if it makes your candidate feel really awesome about joining you, why wouldn’t you get creative?

Innovate or you become irrelevant.  If Playboy and 89-year old Hugh Hefner can do it… why not your organization?

FOT Background Check

Kathy Rapp
Kathy Rapp is the President of hrQ, where she helps companies find groovy HR Talent or HR Consultants to drive business results.  Prior to joining hrQ, Kathy booked more than 15 years of human resources leadership experience working for such companies as Morgan Stanley and First Data Corporation.  A connoisseur of the intersection between pop culture and business, Kathy believes many talent issues can be addressed via the succession planning lessons experienced by Van Halen  (David Lee/Sammy and sadly, Gary Cherone).

8 Comments

  1. Phil North says:

    YES, YES, YES… Manage performance not people… If someone takes too much time away that their performance suffers that isn’t a vacation problem that’s a performance problem.

  2. Matt says:

    The thing is, there’s a lot of data that says unlimited vacation doesn’t actually work. Many companies put these policies in place with the idea that their employees will actually take less vacation. It happened at Kickstarter. Here’s a blog I just read that was talking about this: http://www.selectinternational.com/blog/great-perks-don-t-fix-company-culture

    • Kathy Rapp says:

      I actually don’t believe anyone puts in that kind of policy banking on people taking less time off. What I was trying to get across to readers is the need for innovation and creativity when it comes to paid time off. Whatever makes sense for your organization – do it – just recognize the need to think differently than you have in the past.

      Oh, and Matt….do you happen to be related to Mark who wrote that blog?? 🙂

  3. Mike Vaughn says:

    I think the point is clear and not just for time off. The challenge for HR leaders today is the ability to influence senior leadership teams on the need to innovate in people area as well as the business area. Companies always mention the importance of innovation in their business, but rarely want to discuss innovation in the HR space, however, when there is innovation in the HR space then it shows up some of the best places to work.

    Great read!

    • Kathy Rapp says:

      Thanks for your comment Mike! Agree with your thoughts and hope a lot more HR folks are out there driving the innovation conversation – or frankly just doing it!

  4. Micole Kaye says:

    I love this, Kathy. You are right on the money here. The top talent knows what they are worth and won’t accept less, even if it’s 1 week of vacation time. And, smaller, less known companies are now going to have to fight really well known, good companies for the same talent. These smaller firms are going to have to put on their innovating caps to lure the best candidates to their jobs. Great points here and great article!

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