The world’s second richest man thinks we should all work three-day weeks

Lynsey Barber
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Four-day weekend? Yes please (Source: Getty)

Welcome news on a Monday morning: Mexican businessman and billionaire Carlos Slim suggests we should all be working a three-day week and spend the rest of our time with our feet up.

Who’s going to argue with the world’s second richest man? He obviously knows a thing or two the rest of us don’t.

At a business conference in Paraguay, Slim said he believed it would make a healthier and more productive workforce and tackle challenges linked to longevity, the FT reports. He said:

“People are going to have to work for more years, until they are 70 or 75, and just work three days a week, perhaps 11 hours a day. With three work days a week, we would have more time to relax, for quality of life. Having four days [off] would be very important to generate new entertainment activities and other ways of being occupied.”

In the UK, we might welcome the trade-off of a shorter work week for a longer working life - an extra seven years based on the average age of 63 when Brits exit the labour market.

It’s likely the British population will be working to the age of 70 in the future anyway without the reduced hours, but fingers crossed some blue-sky thinking management consultant will push through this three-day week concept as the next big productivity trend, like Google’s 80/20 rule.

Business leaders in Slim’s home country might also raise an eyebrow at the concept, however, considering the average age of Mexicans leaving the workforce is already pretty close to that mark at 72 years old for men and 69 years old for women.

It seems Slim, still going strong himself at 74 without the four-day weekend, may be a little out of touch with labour force trends.

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