A 21-hour working week, Part 2


So if you didn’t read the last post check it out here, I was talking about the concept of a shorter working week which will help us to live more sustainable lives. In this post I will discuss some benefits and some transitional problems with this concept.

Because of shorter paid working hours people could focus on things that actually matter. They could focus on hobbies and spend less money on things and spend more time doing things. Imagine you could do all those things you’ve always wanted to do but just never had the time.

A shorter working week could help to alleviate inequality in the workplace by distributing income more fairly and to help bring equality between men and women. A shorter working week could help the economy adapt to the needs of society and the environment instead of us and the planet having to adapt to the economy.

It could help businesses to reduce workplace stress in their employees, studies have also shown that shorter working hours make for a more productive employee. It could help to end credit fueled growth by people consuming less and it will help to develop a sustainable economy.

Of course with any new idea or concept there are great challenges. This idea should be viewed as a small part in an attempt to change the way we live and move towards a more sustainable way of living. Some of the challenges include the risk of increasing poverty by reducing the earning power of low paid workers. Resistance of employers because of rising costs and a skills shortage and from employees in a decreased earning power situation. A major challenge could also be general political resistance of the enforcement of policies.

Those are just some of the benefits and challenges and of course there are many more but these are the ones I highlighted for you. In the next post I will discuss a case study of Utah in 2008 and will talk about the necessary conditions for a smooth transition.


  • Jeff

    I agree with the whole concept having more time to do things outside of work but my only worry is the modern day fast paced world, as in work hours are there because of the amount of work employees need to do for that company and to meet a specific deadline. 
    Yes you will get more time to do your hobbies what not but you still losing work hours and I mean the demand and expectations are always so high it will be hard to work less on something that needs all the hours. Especially in big shot business’s, I can just see a guy working less hours and thus becoming more relaxed and having a chilled attitude for work instead of an hard-worker. Then an Asian might come and wanna work the hours and replace him. (just joking on that last point)I don’t know if I’m making sense here I mean I would want this to be initiated I think It could work If everyone was doing it. Would just be difficult in this active and always working world we live in. 

  • Peter

    Hi Jeff

    Im posting a new article this week which has some options in helping to combat some of those problems. Check them out. They should be up by today or tomorrow.


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