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Japanese workers took 62% of paid leave allocation in 2022: gov't survey

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Japanese loyalty to business would make a US republican business owner shed a happy tear..

6 ( +11 / -5 )

Japanese work without taking leave but the rewards are dwindling-discontent and stress result.

-6 ( +13 / -19 )

Japanese loyalty to business would make a US republican business owner shed a happy tear..

That's an odd comment, considering the part of the article that states: "... workers in Japan used 60 percent of their paid leave last year, putting Japan second-to-last ahead of the United States."

11 ( +12 / -1 )

So that means 38% of workers still just don't take paid leave. At the same time Japan complaining about population decline, even father in Japan just don't dare to take parental leave when having new baby in their family. Otherwise it will real effect on their career.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-10-10/banker-s-lawsuit-exposes-japan-s-paternity-leave-problem

-9 ( +9 / -18 )

As long as Japanese consider that presence is more important than productivity it will not improve.

Having say that they hardly take more vacation in the US. The masters of paid leave are the Europeans!

3 ( +12 / -9 )

RakurakuToday 07:30 am JST

As long as Japanese consider that presence is more important than productivity it will not improve.

Having say that they hardly take more vacation in the US. The masters of paid leave are the Europeans!

I'll wager the vacation skippers in the US are paid handsomely for such loyalty. Otherwise it is vacation to the max.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

This number is very deceiving. People here typically do no use vacation time as those in other countries. Japanese businesses typically allow people to use their vacation time by the hour.

Of course there are exceptions to every rule, and I used to work in a company that allowed people to use vacation time by the minute. It's all an accounting matter really.

I also know people who take off early, using 4 hours of vacation time, but are still at their desks an extra hour.

The statistics here are really meaningless without looking at the details.

3 ( +10 / -7 )

Americans get a few weeks of sick leave (with carryover balance) in addition to vacation - is this the same in Japan for comparision?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Still slow but it’s slowly getting better.

As a german living in Japan I have decided to work as free lancer exactly for this non sense policy of full timers expected to work long hours for little income and only 10 days of paid vacations.

As a European I hope that Japan in the future will look more at our work culture ethic prioritizing the physical and mental wellbeing of the workers.

9 ( +14 / -5 )

The school I work at is fairly lenient about giving paid leave. We are obligated to take 5 days off throughout the year, and every year there is an announcement that "Some of you still need to take time off." So they put in the paperwork for time off but then stay on the job. Not me. If I take time off, I'm off. I have no problem getting those 5 days. We get 20 days of paid leave, and up to 20 hours can be rolled over. So I usually start the year off with 40 and take 12~18 throughout the year. Never know when something might come up, so I don't take them unless I need to, or near the end of the year when the time comes for "use it or lose it."

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Good for them. Do not stand between a Japanese person and their job.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

About 2653 companies didn't answer this survey. You can imagine why. Meaningless survey with this many companies not responding.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Hey, not bad at all! But I wonder what the average amount of days per person was used? Someone could have very well used only one day and that counts as one using their leave last year. Lots of companies are also forcing their employees to use their leave even if the employee doesn't want to so that the company can write that on their recruiting page (ratio of employees taking leave: 100%).

It still baffles me whenever I hear someone state that they never use their leave and have x amount of days. The thought of those workers coming in to work while being sick is very selfish in my opinion. Stop spreading your germs so that the other workers can work to their full potential!

0 ( +3 / -3 )

It seems that like workers in the U.S, Japanese people love working and are very loyal to their company, not wanting to leave too much pressure for their coworkers. In many other countries, people use 100% of their entitlement every year.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

I'm taking 100%, forget fake modesty to and 'loyalty' to some company that has no qualms about throwing you out like yesterday's garbage when you're of no use to them anymore.

0 ( +9 / -9 )

Japanese workers took 62% of paid leave allocation in 2022.

This is just so sad for whatever reason.

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

I wonder how much of that was actually sick days when people were forced to use paid leave as if they were having a great time away from work....

6 ( +6 / -0 )

As long as Japanese consider that presence is more important than productivity it will not improve.

Coming to Japan in my very early 20s is exactly what helped me considering freelancing/self-employment, if long hours weren't excruciating enough (even as a single with no obligations at home) I started realizing a lot of coworkers simply hate people who actually enjoy their lives outside of the office, some look at you with a "who does he think he is" pretty pissed face when they overhear you talking with your colleague about your weekend exploring the waterfalls or enjoying a concert, besides I had absolutely no idea refusing an invite to a nomikai to 'go to the gym' was the gravest sin in Japan, and all the other implicit bs.

My only struggle in Japan right now is telling family/friends Japan is pretty much a pleasant, beautiful, enjoyable place to live because not everyone works like the japanese.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Lame.

People do that here in the US, too. I know people in the corporate environment who brag about how they just worked through the days they took off, like I’m going to be proud of them or something. No, actually I just think you’re a loser.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

I wonder how many of these holidays were actually holidays and how many days were sick days or a parent having to take a holiday to stay home to take care of their sick kids.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

It seems that like workers in the U.S, Japanese people love working and are very loyal to their company,

Sadly, the companies very rarely show a similar level of loyalty to their staff.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

Some of the time off people take will be for mundane things, not R&R

Sports day for each kid at school, renewing your driving license, trips to the docs, and health checkups. Looking after kids or PTA stuff too as grund says. If I lived in Tokyo, Id want to extend any long weekend used to travel back to see family in inaka, because getting back into Tokyo on the expressway on a Sunday night is a nightmare.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Some of the time off people take will be for mundane things, not R&R

Sports day for each kid at school, renewing your driving license, trips to the docs, and health checkups. Looking after kids or PTA stuff too as grund says.

agreed, don't forget most bank tellers are also only available during weekdays.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I worked at a big company and always left at 5:30 or 6. Wouldn’t get promoted as a gaijin anyways. Newbie gaijin white guy joined and tried to keep up with his group. Saw him one morning at the water cooler looking like hell and he said he had stayed all night waiting for comments from Europe. Locals said he was a hard worker because he stayed late. Ended up burning out a quitting as I knew would happen. Just don’t do it.

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

Japan's notoriously punishing work culture

Yet Japan ranks 23rd for labor productivity among the 36 nations of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development according to OECD data. Worse, Japan has remained at the bottom of the productivity ranking for Group of Seven nations since 1970! Makes you wonder what are those people doing when they say they are «working».

-6 ( +7 / -13 )

The school I work at is fairly lenient about giving paid leave. We are obligated to take 5 days off throughout the year, and every year there is an announcement that "Some of you still need to take time off."

It is not leniency. It is just the law that now stipulates workers must take at least five paid days a year.

It is not yet fully enforced.

My company also makes sure everyone takes a minimum of five days a year.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

When I worked for Aeon eikaiwa,we weren't paid for days off,but for sick leave.

Hence ringing in sick from the lift at Gala Yuzawa, pretending the chimes were the sound of dialysis machines in the hospital.

Happy days...

6 ( +6 / -0 )

So that means 38% of workers still just don't take paid leave.

No, that’s not what it says at all! It’s saying that, on average, across all companies which responded to the survey, the amount of paid leave actually taken was 62% of the annual entitlement. Even that miserable 62% is a distortion of the true picture. No prizes for guessing that an appallingly low leave entitlement take up was one of the reasons many firms failed to even respond to the survey. Also, as the article says, the 62% average figure disguises a much lower take up of annual holiday entitlement in specific industries such as food and accommodation.

Other countries need to get wise to Japan’s disguised method of maintaining a competitive advantage by stiffing its workers in the way this survey makes clear.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

It seems that like workers in the U.S, Japanese people love working and are very loyal to their company, not wanting to leave too much pressure for their coworkers. In many other countries, people use 100% of their entitlement every year.

The legal question of "qui bene?" (who benefits?) should be asked here.

Not really the co-workers at a fundamental level, but they will attack those perceived as using too much leave, but the business owners.

If there is so much work that the employees can't take their contractual annual leave, then there aren't enough employees. But this state of affairs means that the employer doesn't need to employ the right number of workers - the cost saving goes straight into the owners' pocket as profit.

In 'many other countries' the workers would say, "that's your problem", but in Japan, the workers haven't figured this out. They think that this is a positive trait. The owners think so too, and are laughing all the way to the bank.

The best scam victim is one who doesn't know he's been conned and refuses to accept it when pointed out to him.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

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