On Good Friday in 2014, I viewed an interesting exception to the “business as usual” policy in the 21st Century business world during Easter. And, a very do-able one, according to hoteliers and hotel general managers that offer the service.
I was attending a trade show at a large hotel and convention center in Central Florida. A non-denominational worship service was being held for interested staff members and managers, guests, visitors, even vendors.
The continuous service was taking place between 12:00 noon and 3:00 pm. Persons could walk into the makeshift chapel. They could sit and participate at any time during those hours. For whatever period of time they could fit into their schedule that afternoon.
Traditionally, most businesses closed their doors between 12 noon and 3 pm, on Good Friday. Some – eg. small businesses – closed for the afternoon, to give employees an early start on the long holiday week-end. The tradition ended before I was born.
It allowed the employees, customers and visitors the opportunity to attend one of the on-going worship services in their local community.
Certain businesses could not shut down, even for only two or three hours. Still, they switched operations into slow gear. Management found ways to accommodate at least some employees, who wanted to take off an hour and attend a workshop service. Healthcare facilities, pharmacies, hotels, restaurants, gas stations/convenience stores, and supermarkets were a few of the businesses that stayed open.
Usually, in the painting and decorating trade, it was “business as usual,” too. The work pace slowed considerably, however. The painters stayed on the job. Yet, bosses authorized, even encouraged, them to relax and take more or longer breaks. The atmosphere was lighter. Everyone took the time to visit.
Some contractors treated their crews to lunch: carry-in food. And, everyone including the bosses ate together, sat around a while, and talked.
I think that any of my contractor bosses would have allowed any of his men to take off an hour or two to attend a nearby Good Friday service. I don’t recall that any of the crew members, including myself, took off to do that.
Today, most businesses do not shut down between 12:00 noon and 3 pm on Good Friday. Their operations do not go into slow gear. Management does not accommodate for any employee to take off work to attend a worship service. And, the workers themselves do not expect, nor ask, to take that time off.
Earlier this week, the GM of the hotel, that I mentioned earlier, told me the Good Friday service would be held again this year. He said that “group guests” and “nearly one-half” of his staff, at all levels, had requested the on-site service.
“It’s not something we openly market.” Cheerfully, he added, “We are, however, taking every opportunity to spread the word to everyone here this week… It’s something special that we can offer… A service for all…”
How thoughtful is that!
Best wishes for a Happy Spring – and Peaceful Easter! Thank you for visiting “Painting with Bob.”
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Copyright 2015. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.