"With three work days a week, we would have more time to relax; for quality of life," Slim was quoted as saying. "Having four days [off] would be very important to generate new entertainment activities and other ways of being occupied."
Employees in Mexico work more hours than their counterparts in any other country, according to a study by the OECD, an international economic forum. The study shows workers there work 2,317 hours a year, or 44.6 hours a week, compared to an average of 1,798 hours a year in the United States.
For U.S. workers, the 40-hour, five-day work week became the standard in 1938. Despite gains in productivity and predictions of a significantly shorter work week that would follow, it has remained the standard for more than 75 years.
But while that has been the most common arrangement for full-time U.S. workers, 43% of employers offer at least some workers the option of a compressed work week, according to the the latest survey of the Society for Human Resource Management. That's up from 38% in the earlier survey six years ago.
The survey also found one in 10 offer the option to all or most of their employees. Smaller companies with fewer than 100 employees are more likely to offer the option than large employers with more than 1,000 workers. Those employers allow full-time workers the option to work longer days for part of the week in exchange for one short day or a day off each week or pay period.
The idea of working a compressed work week is popular with employees. A 2008 survey of workers by the Families and Work Institute found that 46% of those offered the option of a compressed week chose to work it at least some of the time. Of those who are not offered the option, 59% would like the option of a shorter work week.