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String of British firms switch over to four-day working week



Lara Intimates is one of the companies switching to a four-day working week.

Lara Intimates是转为954工作制的公司之一

A string of small British firms have switched their workers over to a four-day week, the Guardian can reveal, amid mounting political interest in the idea that working less could deliver higher productivity and better balance between life and work.

《卫报》报导,好几家英国的小公司已经实行954工作制,政府也是相当感兴趣——减少工作时间以便提高生产效率,并且还能在生活和工作中达成更好的平衡。



In the last six months, companies switching to a four-day week include Synergy Vision, a 45-employee medical communications agency, Elektra Lighting, a lighting design company, Lara Intimates, which makes underwear, and the Intrepid Camera company, which makes and exports photographic equipment.

说在过去的六个月(半年)里,实行954工作制的公司有:雇佣45名员工的医疗通信机构Synergy Vision、灯泡设计工司Elektra Lighting,文胸制造商Lara Intimates,摄影器材出口公司Intrepid Camera。

“It has been a beautiful six weeks of having a long weekend,” said Neil Knowles, a design consultant at Elektra, which switched its 10 staff to a shorter week in January.

灯泡设计公司顾问喜怒形于色:过去的六个星期真是太美好了,这么长的周末。今年一月份这家雇佣10名员工的小公司也实行了954工作制。

“Two days out of seven is just enough to recover from a stressful week. Three is enough to recover and have extra time to do something else. It almost feels as if work is interrupting the weekend rather than the other way round.”

他还说:干五天玩二天只能勉强从工作的疲顿中恢复过来,而干四天玩三天不但能恢复,还有余力,工作似乎是周末充话费送的手机铃声。

Maxim Grew, at Intrepid in Brighton, said the switch has ended “Friday afternoon fatigue” and increased morale and energy levels among staff with a feeling that every hour counts, leading to productivity boosts. He said people have quickly adjusted to using the extra time off.

就职于摄影器材出口小公司的小伙子说,这种新政策终结了“疲顿的星期五”,我司员工全体上下土气大振、精力愈发剩余,我们每一个人都自心底觉得,每一个工时都是如同燃烧激情那般,真的能提高工作效率,这很重要。他还说,人们适应得很快,老板再也不用单心磨洋工了。

“I am learning French, Rocco has joined a theatre group, Hugo is spending more time doing carpentry and Sam is building a robot,” he said.

他还说:我学起了法语,同事洛克加入了一个戏剧团,同事雨果将余力宣泄在做木工上,而同事山姆智造机器人!

Vanessa Ross, the owner of Arc Landscape in Surrey, said her team had used the time to volunteer, look after dependent family members and teach.

而位于萨里郡的Arc Landscape公司的女老板则说,她的团队用多出来的周末时间做志愿者、照看家人和教学。

The idea of a four-day week has shot to prominence in recent months, for economic, social, health and technological reasons.

近几个月来,四天工作周的理念备受关注,原因有经济、社会、健康和技术等多个方面。

Overwork results in thousands succumbing to stress or depression each year, according to the Health and Safety Executive; long working hours make parenting and family care ever trickier to juggle; technology, meanwhile, threatens to transform the demand for labour over coming decades.

根据健康与安全执行机构的报告,工作过度每年导致数千人遭受压力或抑郁的困扰。长时间的工作让育儿和照顾家庭更难以兼顾。未来数十年,技术的发展还可能使得劳动力需求减少。



Billy Jenkins, a middle manager at Synergy Vision, said: “It has caused a little tension in the household, as my partner works five days a week and seems to come up with a wishlist of errands or chores that need doing on my day off. It’s also hard to shake off the feeling that I should be working, and it has taken time to feel more comfortable using the time as my own.”

而Synergy Vision公司的中层经理则表示:这让我的家庭关系有点小紧张,因为我老婆每周工作五天,她似乎有很多鸡毛蒜皮的小事想让我在多出的一天假期里去干。而且我总觉得在那一天不工作有负罪感,直到最近我才慢慢醒悟,觉得954工作制理所应当,工人永不低声下气。