No Work Diwali: An Idea That Became a Movement

Why is No Work Diwali?

It all started with a LinkedIn post written by our CEO Mitul Bid last year, sometime around Diwali. It talked about the importance of taking a break during festivals and spending time with loved ones. Consequently, it started a much-needed discussion about professionals working with foreign clients not being able to take time off work during widely celebrated festivals like Diwali.

Now, you might wonder why Diwali? There are other festivals too, and yes, that’s true. But Diwali being one of the largest festivals of India, was the best example to take into perspective. The point is Indian professionals getting the chance to spend festive occasions with their friends and family.

The popular notion is that international stakeholders don’t care for Indian holidays. On the contrary, in most cases, it is the vendor companies that don’t want to have this discussion with clients, thinking that it would put their team in poor light. But why make such presumptions? Christmas is the most popular festival in the west, and companies out there don’t hesitate to take a break from work to enjoy the holidays.

In Indian IT companies, there are declared holidays (or leave options) for Diwali and other festivals. Sadly, many folks end up working and miss out on an enjoyable time. Coditas has been working with clients from the USA for seven years, and all of them support our team members taking time off during Diwali and other occasions. We give them a heads-up well in advance and plan the deliverables accordingly. Yes, that’s all you need — transparency and planning! Sometimes, to make it easier for them to understand, we tell them that these occasions are to India as Thanksgiving or Christmas is to the western countries.

We cannot expect overseas companies to get these things unless we communicate the same to them. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to celebrate holidays without being stressed about deliverables. There are, of course, specific roles or functions like production support where things need to stay the course. But we firmly believe that teams might be able to function with minimal intervention if the processes are planned better.

What is No Work Diwali?

Nobody likes to work during festivals. You miss out on the much-awaited get-togethers and group pictures. But when duty calls, there isn’t much we can do. We wanted to make “taking time off” a healthy practice across the industry. Coditas alone could not make a difference. At the same time, we couldn’t just stay put. Mitul had already planted the seed. We just needed to nurture the idea and act in a way that would create a real impact. Therefore, our team unanimously decided to take to social media and bear the torch for a No Work Diwali Campaign.

So, what is this campaign that we are raving about? 

The No Work Diwali Campaign is a non-profit initiative organized by Coditas. Through this campaign, we want to propagate the importance of taking breaks and encourage:

  1. Organizations to normalize their teams taking time off during Diwali.
  2. Professionals to plan their work ahead and help themselves and colleagues enjoy a work-free Diwali with their loved ones.

When we first launched the campaign on 23rd September 2021, we were not sure how successful it would be. We soon found out that saying it aloud helped shed some light on this situation, and we received an overwhelming response from organizations and professionals across the country. People have acknowledged our purpose and started having healthy discussions regarding the scenario. Over 1100 folks have pledged to celebrate a No Work Diwali. The rest, as they say, is history!

How is No Work Diwali?

Finally, how does the entire campaign work?

It’s pretty simple. If you believe you and your team deserve to celebrate a peaceful Diwali without worrying about deadlines and work calls, take a pledge on noworkdiwali.com. Once you pledge for the cause, you get a personalized badge and a dedicated profile page. You can share them on your social media accounts to spread the word and motivate others to pledge for a work-free Diwali!

Remember, your job level doesn’t matter when you’re taking the pledge. What matters is that you plan your work well in advance and help your team do the same so that everyone gets an opportunity to enjoy their leaves.

Head over to noworkdiwali.com, take the pledge, and have a Happy Diwali!

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