Lets face it. Mondays are hell. That jolting alarm clock ushers the familiar dread of routine.
Usually, it also signifies starting our school or work week with what little rest our streak-of-lightning weekend provides. It’s all enough to beg the question: “Why not get rid of Mondays?”
This question was personally propelled by the revelatory song, “St. Monday,” from England’s best Socialist songwriter, Billy Bragg. In it, Bragg builds a strong case for the four-day work week: “Nobody can say what the matter is / I’m trying to recharge my batteries.”
The notion of a shortened work week is likely to inflame the blood of curmudgeonly bosses and bureaucrats alike.
Nevertheless, the debate on shortening the work week continues to nudge many people around the world who realize the current state of work is more akin to enslavement than empowerment.
Unions around the country champion alternative work schedules. They argue many workers need more time for their families and their mental stability. The four-day (10 hours a day) work week is a common alternative which proponents argue could increase worker moral, create more jobs and decrease labor costs. Even more radical — and perhaps more humanitarian — is the movement to keep the 8-hour day, maintain wages, but cut the length of the week from five days to four.
How could employers and bureaucrats frown upon this? Perhaps it is America’s fervent embracing of the five-day week or the easy-way-out approach employers take with mass lay-offs. Fear of miscommunication among workers with differing schedules or with outside persons is a more plausible argument to the shortened work week.
Nevertheless, employers and employees should experiment with the four-day work week. The possibilities for increasing worker loyalty and performance are reason enough. The effects of reinstating much-needed free time into the lives of workers could prove as revolutionary as the PC.
Neal Ramirez can be reached at email@example.com