Posted: December 28, 2017

After 5 years of service, Influence Health employees are offered the opportunity for a sabbatical. The primary purpose of the Sabbatical Program is to allow employees time to recharge, rejuvenate, and return to work re-energized. Sabbaticals are planned, strategic job-pauses during which an employee should take time to engage in activities they may not otherwise have the time to do such as travel, volunteer, do research, learn a new skill, or fulfill a lifelong dream before returning to work.

Whitni Suarez, Client Partner for Web Services, shares about her sabbatical.

1. What do you do at Influence Health and what is your title?
I am a client partner in the web services department

2. Where did you go and why did you choose to go there?
We had a lot of changes coming for my family, and we knew it would be harder with schedules to get together, so we wanted to make the most of our time and enjoy family.

We started out with a quick weekend trip to Disneyland and California Adventure and also went to a Dodgers Game.

Then, we spent the next week getting ready for my older daughter Kristi’s wedding. Her sister Lindsey and brother Mark were both in the wedding on September 15, 2015.

The day after the wedding, we moved Lindsey into an on campus apartment for her second year at UC Santa Cruz, which is about three and a half hours north of us, and spent some time playing tourist.

Next, we moved my son to San Diego, which is about five hours south of us, to start his first year of Law school at USD. San Diego is really pretty and we ended up spending a few days there with him.

With the nest now empty, (with the exception of Lundy our 2 year old yellow lab), my husband and I headed off to Waikiki for a week to relax then came back and headed up to the Sierras for some camping and fishing in Lundy Canyon, which was really beautiful that time of year with the fall colors starting to change.


3. How long did it take to plan the trip?
The actual trip took no more than a week to plan. Timing was actually the most important thing since our schedules were tight.

4. What did your manager say when you asked for the time off?
Nothing really. I let her know that I would make sure I had resources in place to assist my client while I was out.


5. Share a favorite memory or two from your trip.
There are so many to choose from, but hands down I would say my daughter getting married!


6. How did you feel on your first day back in the office?
It was an adjustment, but honestly, I’ll always be ready for another vacation!

7. What would you tell someone worried about being gone/letting go of their projects for that long?
I knew it would be really hard for me not to check my work email after checking it constantly for 15 years.

I changed my password to a really random password, wrote it down, and then deleted the app from my phone/ipad. I deleted Slack as well. This way, I could not get into my email if I was tempted until I was back at my desk looking at the password I wrote down.

I made sure I had a resource for each of my clients and also let them know that support was always available to them. I felt confident they would be in good hands while I was gone by doing that, so that I did not worry the whole time.

8. Would you do it again? If so, what would you do differently?
I would do it exactly the same.

9. When did you take your trip?
September/October 2015

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