Monday, February 18, 2013

Exhausted Workforce

Warning:  This post has no suggestions for solutions.  It is full of observations, some of which might make you cranky.

A recent New York Times article about gender inequality cited various statistics comparing the United States' workplace policies and practices to roughly 190 other countries of similar economic and political development.  The results were heartbreaking, but did help to explain why so many people feel like the cartoon man in the above picture -- exhausted and overwhelmed at work.

According to the article, the United States places "dead last" as far as family-work policies and ranked among the very highest in the hours most employers required their average employees to work.  Many Americans now clock 50 or more hours per week at work, far more than any other industrialized country, including Japan.  Add to this the increasingly-popular practice of hiring young people as "interns," for no wages, and we've certainly got a workforce crisis in the making.

There's a myth that the United States is the most progressive place around, that we are the world's leader, the most-progressive of the progressive.  This article is one of many that challenge that myth.  The question, of course, is:  What can we do about it?

The lengthly article discussed much more than the increase in work hours.  Click here to read the article for yourself:  NY Times Article

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