Aug. 15 - More and more companies are organizing staff vacations - holidays with the boss - as a way to reward employees and boost output. Ciara Sutton reports.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) FJORD EMPLOYEE SAYING: "I want to see some whales." (SOUNDBITE) (English) FJORD EMPLOYEE SAYING: "I'm looking forward to hiking" An exciting trip to the remote fjords of Iceland. But this is no family getaway - these tourists are employees holidaying with their boss. (SOUNDBITE) (English) FJORD EMPLOYEE SAYING: "Spending time with great colleagues and sleeping a lot." UK digital design company Fjord takes it's staff away twice a year and no expense is spared. On this trip the group flew in a private jet, kayaked with seals and trekked through mountains on horseback. Company founder Olof Schybergson says it's good for business. (CAN THIS BITE BE SHORTER BY CHOPPING OUT MIDDLE BIT IN BRACKETS) (SOUNDBITE) (English) FOUNDER AND CEO OF FJORD, OLOF SCHYBERGSON, SAYING: "We wanted to offer them something that is really special and really iconic. So we take them on a 5-7 day trip to the beautiful Fjord landscapes and that is such a contrast to the day to day contrast of the day to day urban environment and the screens that we live in. It's a really refreshing alternative." There are no "team building" exercises. But it is hoped that staff from Fjord's six offices around the globe will bond through shared experience. Manuel Grossmann, who made this video, certainly enjoyed the trip. (SOUNDBITE) (English) FJORD EMPLOYEE, MANUEL GROSSMANN, SAYING: "Going on vacation with them didn't seem strange because the environment you go to is very authentic and very natural so it is not that we went somewhere that we would have to behave in a certain way, you can just go there and be yourself." (SOUNDBITE) (English) FOUNDER AND CEO OF FJORD, OLOF SCHYBERGSON, SAYING: "It's quite difficult to justify precisely the return on investment but happy and inspired people who have a natural sense of curiosity and exploration are being fed a bit more of that." The trend is a growing one. UK property firm Badger Holdings sent its employees to Las Vegas. And Google reportedly booked an entire ski resort for its staff. At Fjord, you have to have been with the company for two years before you can go on a trip. And surely there are other downsides? (SOUNDBITE) (English) FJORD EMPLOYEE, MANUEL GROSSMANN, SAYING: "If you don't mind sleeping next to your snoring colleague, then there are none." Fjord spent around £100,000 on this trip. And says staff generally appreciate the holidays far more than a cash bonus, even if it means spending 24 hours with colleagues instead of the usual eight. Ciara Sutton, Reuters.