Cost of living crisis: Should workers stop talking about holidays?

Should holiday chat be BANNED in the office? Love Island’s Shaughna Phillips clashes with The Apprentice’s Tim Campbell who tells GMB boasting about your break is ‘insensitive’ amid the cost of living crisis

  • Shaughna Phillips, 28, and Tim Campbell, 44, debated talking holidays at work
  • Speaking on GMB, panel questioned if it’s appropriate amid rising living costs
  • Viewers took to Twitter arguing workers should express themselves freely 

Love Island’s Shaughna Phillips and winner of The Apprentice Tim Campbell clashed during a debate on ITV’s Good Morning after being asked if people should avoid chatting about their holidays at work. 

Reality star Shaughna, 28, claimed she enjoyed hearing about other people’s holidays while previously working in an office, while Tim, 44, said ‘showing off’ about holidays may not be ‘respectful’ of people who are struggling financially. 

The debate divided viewers as many took to social media arguing people should be able to express themselves freely.

Love Island’s Shaughna Phillips and winner of The Apprentice Tim Campbell (pictured) clashed on ITV’s Good Morning Britain 

Shaughna (pictured left), who has recently returned from Jamaica, said she loves hearing other people’s holiday experiences, while Tim (also pictured in Jamaica with his wife, right) argued it’s not always respectful to talk about expensive trips 

Susanna introduced the segment explaining Shaughna believes discussing holidays in the workplace brings employees together and creates ‘team spirit’.

The debate comes as an increasing number of firms are discouraging employees from talking about their holidays amid the cost of living crisis.

‘I have just come back from Jamaica, I don’t have anywhere booked at yet for the rest of the year but I’m open to it,’ Shaughna said.

Susanna responded: ‘Can you see why talking about it in the office when people are cutting back so drastically right now, can you see there is an argument not to talk about it?’

Shaughna said: ‘Absolutely. I completely understand going in every day to talk about my incredible holiday while someone is trying to work out whether they’re going to have breakfast dinner that day. I completely get it.

‘But I think it’s all relative. I’ve worked in an office, I loved the social aspect of it and I would really struggle to work from home. 

‘Hearing someone else going on holiday would make me happy for them and I would love to hear their experiences.

Tim told presenters Richard Madeley and Susanna Reid (pictured left) that no one wants to be the ‘workplace holiday showoff’ who arrives in the office showing their tan

‘You can be happy for someone while also thinking, “Gosh I wish I was going on holiday”. You can have both feelings.’

Richard agreed that it’s ‘reasonable’ to want to talk about privileged experiences without ‘rubbing people’s faces’ in it.

‘It’s a bit puritanical to tell people to shut up,’ Richard added.

Disagreeing, Tim said: ‘There are certain unwritten bylaws in a work environment. You must not have bad hygiene or bad manners. You don’t want to be the person who takes the last bit of tea or doesn’t replace the milk at the end of the day.

‘And you definitely don’t want to be the workplace holiday show off. They come in minimal clothes because they want to show off their tan.’

Tim said he doesn’t show his holiday photos in the workplace or on LinkedIn, as there’s a ‘distinct difference’ between social media and professional environments 

As photos from Tim’s own holiday to Jamaica flashed on screen the panel erupted in laughter with Susanna saying ‘practice what you preach’.

He said: ‘Hundred per cent but what I didn’t do was go around with a mobile phone with the selfies, a hundred million taken, and show it to the person who doesn’t want to know.

‘They always have that “guess what” story that no one cares about apart from themselves. 

‘On your socials you’ll put pictures like that, on LinkedIn and work that wouldn’t go anywhere near it.

‘LinkedIn is professional and for work. There’s a distinct difference.’ 

Richard questioned if it’s appropriate to discuss getting a new car or going for an expensive meal, if employees are banned from talking about holidays 

Richard said: ‘Where do you draw the line though? Suppose you’ve been lucky enough to get a new car. I don’t mean a brand new car but you’ve changed your car, you want to talk about that.

‘Maybe you went out for a real good meal, because it was your birthday the night before, that cost a lot of money that some people might feel they couldn’t afford.

‘Surely you could talk about stuff like that. Where do you draw the line?’

Tim responded: ‘You’ve got to feel the room. You could be working in a workforce where there’s lots of different wages and salary incomes.

‘If you’re coming in and saying, “Look at my brand new car, it changes all colours etc”, while the person has just had to put their car up for sale because they need to make some money. 

‘You’ve just got to feel the room and be respectful of other people.’

Shaughna said she wouldn’t get jealous if she heard someone talking about their holiday to Costa Del Sol or Butlins because it’s ‘all relative’

The panel fell into hysterics after Shaughna said ‘I absolutely agree’ instead of debating Tim.

She corrected herself, saying: ‘No, I think it’s all very relative. You could get a week a way to Costa Del Sol and you could get a weekend away to Butlins.

‘Butlins could cost substantially more. That might not be my cup of tea and I might not get jealous of you going to Butlins or Costa Del Sol. It’s all very relative.’

Susanna added: ‘Also I think isn’t there an issue about policing the way we talk to each other. It comes down to one person’s I’m sharing my experience is another person’s you’re making me feel bad about the fact I’m not having that experience.

‘If we’re constantly self-conscious about what we’re saying to each other. 

‘The whole point about being in the office and being together is that you can just chat about things you find interesting and you hope your colleagues might.’

Tim said it’s ‘acceptable’ to discuss holidays in a private conversation but he would hold back information while talking among a wider group of people 

Tim said: ‘100 per cent. You had a recent interview where you felt the room of a certain politician and they didn’t read it correctly. They got it totally wrong.

‘For me it’s about having the emotional intelligence to know what you are saying and who you’re saying it to. 

‘We could have a very private conversation about my holiday or my car and it would be perfectly acceptable. But if I’m talking among a wider group of people, I might want to hold a little bit back just to be respectful.’

‘It also opens up conversation, If I say ‘I’ve just booked a holiday’ to my colleague and they say ‘I’m really struggling at the minute.’

‘That then opens up the conversation to say ‘is there anything I can do to help?, Is there things you might need put in place?’ Shaughna said.

Shaughna argued discussing holidays in the workplace could open up an opportunity to offer help to anyone struggling financially 

Richard revealed the results of their Twitter poll shows 88 per cent of people don’t think holiday talk should be banned in the office. 

Many viewers took to the platform giving their opinion on the debate, with one writing: ‘Should holiday talk be banned in the office? Don’t be f***** ridiculous. I’m sick of hearing about everyone’s kids. Ban that.

‘Why stop there? Weddings, pregnancy, retirement, anything that makes you happy really. There’s always some grumpy b****** that won’t like something #GMB’ 

Another said: ‘No. People shouldn’t keep quiet about going on holiday! If you can afford to smoke then you can afford £10 a week to put away for a holiday whether it’s abroad or in the UK’

A third commented: ‘Stop talking about holidays at work… bore off snowflakes. And if the company is that bothered about protecting their staff from holiday chat, maybe they should pay all their staff enough so they can afford to go on holiday as well.’

Many commenters argued workplaces shouldn’t ban discussions on holidays 

A fourth added: ‘I live in a barely habitable flat, never owned a car, never had a smartphone, own practically no jewellery, don’t get any beauty treatments, however I’m going on a Mediterranean holiday next month & a Caribbean holiday next spring – if I want to talk about it then I will.’

Others disagreed and said they would be glad if holiday talk was banned in the workplace.

One person said: ‘Yes & not just because it’s f***** gross when people in Britain ate starving, but because air travel is one of the worst things you can personally do to destroy the planet.’  

Another said: ‘I’m not a fan of boorish idiots bragging about holidays or whatever but we’re no longer sleep walking in to some horrible society where we can’t express freely in case we offend some feeble minded moron, we’re sprinting and launching ourselves at the door to it.’ 

Others admitted they find holiday talks at work ‘boring’ and ‘bragging isn’t attractive’

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