Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Since when is wanting a reasonable work week a women's issue? I guess it is one of the major things frequently brought up when discussing why there are fewer female senior executives. Women want (Horror of Horrors) a family, and a life, and that is just unreasonable if you want to be successful.

But Fortune has an article today that points out that shockingly men would actually like to have lives too:

Our new survey of senior FORTUNE 500 male executives offers surprising
answers. Fully 84% say they'd like job options that let them realize their
professional aspirations while having more time for things outside work; 55% say
they're willing to sacrifice income. Half say they wonder if the sacrifices
they've made for their careers are worth it. In addition, 73% believe it's
possible to restructure senior management jobs in ways that would both increase
productivity and make more time available for life outside the office. And 87%
believe that companies that enable such changes will have a competitive
advantage in attracting talent. Other interviews suggest that the younger a male
executive is, the more likely he is to say he cares about all of this.

Of course there's a roadblock to reform: fear. FORTUNE's survey found
that even though most senior-level men want better options, nearly half believe
that for an executive to take up the matter with his boss will hurt his

Don't know much about this survey, but it isn't exactly a revolutionary concept that people would want time for friends family and extracurriculars. Even Men, The workhorse of the human race don't salivate a the idea of spending 47% of their life (an 80 hour work week) at their job.

But seriously, I am glad that there is a push for a more humane work week. Fortunately I am in touch with my own laziness and would never try for a job that required more than say 50 hours per week. Sadly not all people are so lucky. What's the point of making money, if you never have time to spend it?

It is good to see that Fortune is trying to push the 40 hour week off of the "women's issue" table. Though it is sortof surprising that it was on our table in the first place.


Anonymous said...

I shall tell the youngersters what to take away from this.

Executive are full of fear.

They seem powerful autocrats to us workers, they cultivate that... but in fact they are fearful, they fear... spots on their tie, to be seen this or that way by the board or their executive bosses.

They are the most fearful and pandering of men, by and large, and for this they are paid well even to fail... for no normal man or woman can muster the level of obsessive fear that they can and couple it with a disregard for their own growth other than in material ways.

Ah yes, I swear it's true!


Averroes said...

In actual fact, the amount of hours worked has risen in recent years. And this is not because of some conspiracy of evil business. Only tose on salary would think that, showing just how far removed they are fromthe common man.

One place i worked actually had the union kill a proposal to hire more people becasuse that would cut down on overtime. At that place, the average worker worked 56 hours a week, and spent his off time clamouring for more.

Shinobi said...

Well I think this article dealt mostly with salaried types Av as they were surveing executives from fortune 500 companies. Though I know what you're saying about hourly workers is true.

Do you think a rise in hours for hourly workers and a rise in hours for salaried workers would be correlated? I didn't think the two would affect eachother, especially in businesses that don't have an hourly/manufacturing component.