Sir: Your report (4 March) about people working long hours in merchant banks in the City is merely the tip of the iceberg. Here in Britain we work longer hours than anywhere else in Europe, and both business and our families are suffering as a consequence. With 40 per cent of managers working more than 50 hours a week no wonder more than 80 million days are lost each year because of stress.
Long hours are bad for business, bad for our children, for our families and ultimately for ourselves. In the long run the macho culture of long hours will be replaced by family-friendly employers who find they are better able to recruit and retain good staff.
Businesses like to be perceived as contributing to the community, but long working hours are actively contributing to the breakdown of communities. Our message to business is to think family-friendly, and get ahead.
Joint Chief Executive
Parents At Work