Author: Viktoriya Ivanova
It is known everywhere that Europeans do not work as much as Americans or other workers worldwide. Many see it as a problem with the European work ethic, and those who are used to spending 9-10 hours in the office give Europeans disapproving looks.
The United States is still looked at as the most competitive nation worldwide, but other data such as GDP per hours worked reveals that many countries in the EU are just as productive as the U.S. and they have the benefit of more days off per year. Furthermore, countries in the Benelux (Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg) are 27% more efficient than the U.S. and France is only 2% less efficient.
You may be surprised by such data; however, the explanation is simple. A rested mind operates much better and in a much more efficient way than an exhausted one. Statistics show that while Europeans are on vacation they hardly worry about the state of the economy or other work issues; Americans on the other hand spend too much time preoccupied and dwelling on issues instead of relaxing. Moreover, Americans are more likely to visit Facebook or other social websites due to the fact they have less time to enjoy with friends.
In conclusion, on one side there is France and Luxemburg with highly competitive economies and many vacation days; and on the other there is the U.S. - competitive but at the price of exhausted workers...I think it's obvious who has the better deal. So, should something be done about increasing vacation for employees in the States or would it be of no help?