Many Swedish companies also decided to test
Posted On July 31, 2020
The 8-hour working day is due to Henry Ford, who apparently not only revolutionized the production process, creating the first car for the masses. In 2000, Paris was the first in Europe to initiate a discussion on shortening the working week. Thanks to the code regulations, a shorter working week was introduced to the Irish (39 hours), Italians (38 hours), Danes (37 hours), French (35 hours). In Sweden, however, experiments were conducted with a 6-hour working day (30 hours a week).
The effects of introducing a 6-hour working day in Sweden have brought surprising conclusions. Bloomberg described the example of a nursing home in Gothenburg. The results of the research carried out in the department show that the health, job satisfaction and energy of nurses have increased. It is worth emphasizing that the patients themselves also noticed a significant increase in the level of care. However, it was necessary to employ 17 additional people, which increased the costs of running a nursing home.
The Swedes are the first!
Toyota can serve as a model example of the effects of shortened working hours in Sweden. The Japanese company limited its working time to 6 hours already 14 years ago. As the company managers admit, employees are more refreshed and more willing to return to work the next day. Their efficiency has also increased.
Many Swedish companies also decided to test the reduced working hours. Instead, they introduced break restrictions, and employees were cut off from social media – which, according to managers, resulted in greater concentration on their duties and more effective work. Effectively!
As experts in the field of time management emphasize – 6-hour working time is the future. The most important advantage of such a working time model is the greater energy of employees. Since they have more time to rest, they are more cheerful and less stressed, and therefore get sick less often. Better employee well-being results in better relationships with colleagues and a nicer workplace atmosphere.
People working in this mode also become more effective – when an employee knows that he has less time to complete a task, he focuses more on it. A 6-hour working day can also be a great benefit that will convince candidates to apply to a given company. On the other hand, however, when an employee has difficulties with getting down to work, 6 hours may be too short a time to fulfill the duties.
They grow coffee, cocoa, tea, rice, bananas and oranges
Companies will strive to make the hours of their employees more flexible. Polish companies have only recently started to introduce flexible working hours. It can be concluded from this that the reduction of hours will not come soon.
However, it is worth remembering that a generation is entering the market that values free time and prefers to work shortly but intensively. Will this, however, encourage Polish employers to experiment with working time models? We still have to wait for this answer. Many of us, when faced with the term “fair” in relation to commercial practices, wonder, is it not a mistake?
After all, trading is usually about earning as much as possible and it is normal for the stronger to outplay the weaker. In fact, we have learned to deal with the problems of the weakest, whether they are neighborhood farmers or billions of anonymous inhabitants of the planet living in poverty. The most common explanation for this state of affairs is the invisible hand of the market, globalization, the justification is our benefits – cheap goods.
Unfortunately, it happens at the expense of people living somewhere beyond our sight. They grow coffee, cocoa, tea, rice, bananas and oranges, exotic products commonly available in our country. Most of these commodities come from large, mechanized plantations linked to strong market players, middlemen and multinationals. Small-scale producers, who together with their families make up a major proportion of farming communities, remain outside the mainstream economy.
In Europe, we find numerous examples of such activities
If they work for profit at all, they are under imposed conditions, seasonally, without concern for the health and situation of their families. Their salaries are an insignificant component of the final hour of hard work, not enough for food, and children from an early age have to work to help support themselves. Almost 1/3 of the food consumed in the European Union comes from countries where many people suffer from hunger. Such practices have been opposed for over 60 years by Fair Trade – a movement of non-governmental organizations whose goal is to help marginalized small producer communities. It is not about charity – not a fish, but a fishing rod. For many years, the help consisted in selling local handicrafts and textiles in specialized stores run by the Fair Trade Organizations.
In Europe, we find numerous examples of such activities in the form of several thousand World Shops – World Shops operated to this day by non-governmental organizations with the participation of volunteers. At the end of the 1980s, this method was also used to sell food from small producers operating within the framework of Fair Trade.
So what is the difference between Fair Trade and conventional trade?
The main goal of organizations working for Fair Trade is development aid to poor communities in the South. Working in this spirit, organizations with a monitored status, respecting the principles of Fair Trade they conclude long-term agreements with producers (e.g. coffee, tea, cocoa, bananas, fruit, flowers) guaranteeing them stable prices for their products above the market. Under such agreements, a prepayment is made for the purchase of grain for sowing, seedlings, etc.
The rule is also the payment of social bonuses intended for the development of local communities. On the other hand, an important agreement is the democratic management of producer cooperatives, their observance of human rights in the field of freedom of association, fair payment for work, exclusion of slave practices and child labor.