Virgin’s Richard Branson offers staff unlimited holiday

The boss of Virgin Group, Sir Richard Branson, is offering his personal staff as much holiday as they want.

On his website, he said that his staff of 170 could “take off whenever they want for as long as they want”.

He added that there was no need to ask for approval, nor say when they planned to return, the assumption being that the absence would not damage the firm.

Mr Branson said he was inspired by his daughter, who read about a similar plan at the online TV firm Netflix.

“It is left to the employee alone to decide if and when he or she feels like taking a few hours, a day, a week or a month off,” wrote the billionaire.

“The assumption being that they are only going to do it when they feel 100% comfortable that they and their team are up to date on every project and that their absence will not in any way damage the business – or, for that matter, their careers!”

He added that he had introduced the policy in the UK and the US “where vacation policies can be particularly draconian”. If it goes well there, Mr Branson said he would encourage subsidiaries to follow suit.

“We should focus on what people get done, not on how many hours or days worked. Just as we don’t have a nine-to-five policy, we don’t need a vacation policy,” he wrote.

The blog is an excerpt from a forthcoming book.

Virgin Group employs more than 50,000 people around the world and operates in more than 50 countries.

Mr Branson started the company in 1970 and it has gone from a mail order record company to having businesses in telecoms, travel and financial services.

Read more: http://www.bbc.com/news/business-29356627