Fancy A Six Hour Work Day? Move To Sweden

Publish Date
Thursday, 8 October 2015, 4:26PM
Photo- iStock

Photo- iStock

The small Scandinavian country will cull the wasted two hours everybody spends on Facebook and Twitter and let people go home earlier.

New Zealand's average working day consists of the regular eight hours - though our productive hours are likely much less. Following the lead of Sweden, we could be in for more well-being and productivity, while negating health risks that come with working long hours.

Sweden is the first country to trial six-hour working days, with many businesses in the private sector having already implemented change.

According to a research project conducted in the UK with more than 600,000 people, working long hours significantly increases the risks of coronary heart disease and strokes.

The Gothenburg government is trialling shorter shifts in certain sectors, however, most companies still work 40 hour weeks.

CNN Money reported that the companies who have shorter working days have increased productivity and have better morale.

Researchers from the University College of London analysed twenty five studies from twenty four cohorts throughout Europe, the United States and Australia.

The study compared data of men and women free from coronary heart disease against age, sex, socioeconomic status and the amount of hours worked per week.

Findings published in The Lancet revealed that individuals working 55 or more hours per week have a 33 per cent greater risk of a stroke compared to those maintaining a standard 35-40 hours.

The outcome suggests that more attention should be paid to the management of risk factors in individuals who work longer days.

Sweden recognises the economic and social value of a shorter work day, along with France who have recently introduced legislation which seeks to protect workers 'free time'.

According to the New Zealand Productivity Commission, Kiwis work long hours but lack in the amount of goods and services they produce.

Data from Statistics NZ shows that 153,000 work 50 hour weeks, 141,000 work 45 hour weeks, while more than 19,000 claim to work 70 hour weeks.

Linus Feldt, CEO of Stockholm-based app developer Filimundus, has put forward the argument that six-hour working days have the same result as an eight-hour day of work.

Working between 41 to 48 hours gives workers a 10 per cent higher risk of stroke, which then jumps to a 27 per cent increased risk if working 49 to 54 hours.

We're alright with this! 

Source- NZ Herald