On and off the court, the NBA is a demanding business.
The 82-game season has evolved into a year-round product with the WNBA, Gatorade League, 2K League, Summer League, the draft, free agency and training camp. Not to mention international tournaments, camps across the globe and the Olympics — the list goes on. That's why in 2015, the league's head of human resources, Eric Hutcherson, and Commissioner Adam Silver decided to roll out an unusual perk: sabbaticals.
Employees who worked at the league for 10 years get four weeks off, fully paid, and their job is waiting for them when they return. At 20 years with the league, they get eight weeks off. That's on top of their annual vacation.
The program has has become a popular perk and has been beneficial for employees, who are taking a break, as well as those back at the office, where they have found a chance to show new leadership skills.
"I call working at the league as a way of life. You have to love it, be part of it and accept it as a way of life," said Hutcherson. "But at the 10-year point, it's a good time to believe that now is the time to recharge, reinvigorate, recommit and re-decide."