Workaholic Koreans Have 'Difficulty Taking Vacation'

      August 08, 2011 11:23

      Koreans are among those working the longest hours among the 34-member OECD, but they also waste more time at work and are not rewarded with the same level of vacation time as employees in other countries, according to the BBC.

      "Despite being extremely hardworking, [Koreans'] productivity measured among the lowest of the OECD's members," the BBC reported on Friday.

      Koreans' "average annual leave is currently just 11 days and those days are usually taken as short breaks," the broadcaster said in a story titled, "How do you persuade a workaholic to take a holiday?" The story was based on the results of a recent OECD survey.

      The country topped the list of OECD member states last year in terms of the average number of hours each Korean works per year, which stood at 2,193. Chile came next with 2,068 hours, followed by Russia (1,976), the U.K. (1,647) and the U.S. (1,778).

      The BBC also named Singapore and Hong Kong as examples of workaholic Asian economies.

      "Changing a culture where it is often feared that if you have time for a vacation your services may be viewed as expendable, will take some time," the BBC added.

      The survey also showed the correlation between employees' level of connectedness to their jobs and the expectations of employers, it added. According to the BBC, many Asian bosses expect to be able keep in touch with their employees when they take vacation.

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