No question, employees look forward to a paid vacation and often return refreshed and recharged. That shows in their work. Paid mission leave, in our experience, is even better. Why?
Our firm offers paid mission leave, although it’s highly unconventional. We’ll pay for one week for any full time employee to do something that serves other folks. They pick it, so long as others get served. And everyone who’s taken advantage of the leave has come back to work with a renewed focus on serving everyone around them – from the rest of our team, to our clients, to the justice system.
We chose the term “mission leave” for a simple reason. It emphasizes that we’re all part of something bigger than ourselves. Everyone yearns for that, no matter their religious persuasion (or lack thereof).
Making the leave paid is nothing more than going above-and-beyond on accommodating our team’s core beliefs. It’s a super generous accommodation for our team members who have faith. If someone lacks a faith, there’s no discrimination. That individual would still get to go on mission for something important to him that serves other folks. End of story.
Having a workplace free of religious discrimination doesn’t mean that it must be sterile. Instead, everyone must be respected for their individual contributions to the team. Core beliefs build character, which benefits whatever you do. Every time.
p.s. – We stole the idea for paid mission leave from a client. We respect his bold leadership in the oil patch.