tirsdag, august 26, 2008

Death by overworking


Probably not for this gentleman, dozing off the effects of soju on a sleepy summer sunday in Seoul. However, a friend of a friend working in Korean company Samsung revealed that last year 16 people died on the job, found slumped on their desks. A number the company has been keen to keep internal to not make waves in the media. Considering Samsung is just one, if a huge one, company among thousands in Korea, 16 is a crazily big number.

The Japanese of course have a word for this manner of passing on, karoshi, and at least some kind of official recognition of the problem, for instance lawsuits have succeeded against some companies. The extremely hardworking Koreans though, seem to have a ways to go still. Putting in an average of 2357 hours a year according to Forbes makes them top of the OECD countries and comes out at almost double that of those lazy Norwegians, Germans and Dutch. Work to live, people.

2 kommentarer:

Kyle sa...

This is also probably true in Taiwan. My Taiwanese friends always work overtime on the weekends and on average they get paid less than half of what S. Koreans get paid.

I'm feeling the crunch too. I feel like the working conditions here are breaking me down...

TrUlster sa...

Yep, a Taiwanese friend has eight days off a month, and the standard work day is 12 hours! Horrible!

Of course as a friend commented, it is perhaps easy for me to say "take it easy" being from Northern Europe and backed by decent health care and pension systems, most places in the world gotta strive a lot to attain that security.