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July 22, 2014


Naps have long widely considered a rejuvenating luxury and something is taken advantage of only by everyone who can afford to do so, but is it an economic tool? The government of South Korea seems to be thinking that way; in a recent announcement the municipal government of Seoul will institute an optional nap policy for employees who wish to take advantage of it. The policy will enable employees to take a one-hour nap between the hours of 1 p.m. and 6 p.m., assuming that they provide their supervisors with notification (that morning) of their plans to take a nap during the afternoon.

This idea is not as radical as it might sound at first: companies as large and well-known as Google and Proctor & Gamble have instituted naptime policies and even purchased specific chairs to enable more sound sleeping.

With the average worker clocking in over 2,100 hours per year, South Koreans put in the most hours out of any OECD nation, and many organizations are worried about the impact of fatigue on performance. While currently limited to government workers in Seoul, the possibility that this may spread to private service professionals is interesting; with jobs that might require evening entertaining of clients, employees might be more productive if given the opportunity to nap during the day.

Food for thought!


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