5 Reasons Managers Hate Thanksgiving

by Katie Sawyer, 3 minutes read
HOME blog 5 reasons managers hate thanksgiving

Ah, the holiday season. A time to enjoy the best that life has to offer. The entire period from Thanksgiving to New Year’s is one big party. Parties, big dinners, and shopping. What’s not to love?

Well, a business manager can list a number of reasons why Thanksgiving gives them a headache. Read on for five reasons why managers hate Thanksgiving — and the secret for making it through the holiday with a smile.

1. Time off requests

Some jobs give their employees a four-day weekend to celebrate Thanksgiving. Kids and teachers are out of school, banks are closed, and offices are closed down.

It’s only natural that your retail staff would also want the time off to spend with their families. So you brace for it — the slew of time-off requests, most of which can’t be met. Many stores are either open on Thanksgiving or preparing for the dreaded Black Friday crowd.

You need your team to show up on time and ready to work. So what does that mean for you? You get to turn down a zillion time-off requests and deal with unhappy employees who have to work. Being the holiday villain is a hard job.

2. Difficulty scheduling

Thanksgiving begins the season of extended holiday hours, leaving managers scrambling to create workable and legal schedules. And when you try to keep overtime to a minimum, you’re constantly working miracles to keep things running.

To top it off, you likely have at least one employee that will complain about their schedule — no matter how fair you tried to be. If only there was a way to make scheduling easier.

3. (Seemingly) never-ending work

When you’re a manager, the buck stops at your desk. Well, if you have one.

If people are sick or simply don’t show up, the manager has to find a replacement. Ever seen a manager frantically working a cash register while answering a million employee questions? Yep, someone didn’t show.

Bars, department stores, grocery stores. Seems like the work never ends. Is it any wonder that you dread Thanksgiving and the weeks that follow?

4. Black Friday

For shoppers, Black Friday is your chance to stock up of gifts. Discounts are flowing and you have your coupons ready.

But for managers, Black Friday is an exhausting marathon, complete with crowded stores, agitated customers, and a million complaints. Plus, you need to make sure your staff takes their breaks and provide the best customer service.

And even if you’re stressed, managers are expected to remain calm, no matter how stressed they actually are. And even if they have a few hours off on Thanksgiving, they can’t escape the dread of the next day. Even the pumpkin pie doesn’t sit well.

5. New hires

The busiest time of the year means businesses have to take on new, usually temporary, employees. And while managers are happy to have more help, they also dread the training period.

Most of these workers are hired shortly before Thanksgiving, so they aren’t fully trained when the Black Friday crowd rushes through the door. Some seasonal workers need more time and instruction just when managers are least able to give it.

Giving thanks this year

Managers hate Thanksgiving for a good reason. It’s the kickoff to a period of stress and overwork punctuated with customer complaints and a little sleep. But work doesn’t have to be so overwhelming over the holidays. Check out Making Shifts Bright to see how you can make scheduling a breeze this holiday season.