While all nations rate spending time with family and travel as their top two desires, the remaining top five “more time” wish lists vary by country. Employees in France, Germany, U.S., and the U.K. listed “sleep more” as a top five-priority.
A recent survey by Kronos Incorporated with The Workforce Institute on the Future Workplace data series which examined how employees across eight nations view their relationship with work and life. When asked the simple simple question, “What would you do with more time or an extra day off?” workers from Australia, Canada, France, Germany, India, Mexico, the U.K., and the U.S give surprising answers. The survey revealed that 66 per cent Indians are keen on developing new skills if they had an extra free day. The other options Indians said they would do in the extra time they will get are following:
– 52 per cent Indians want to spend additional time with family
– 46 per cent Indians want to additional spend time travelling
– 32 per cent Indians want to spend additional time with friends
– 20 per cent Indians want to spend additional time pursuing hobbies
– 29 per cent Indians want to spend additional time focusing on mental health
– 35 per cent Indians would like to pursue entertainment activities during additional time off
With more time, the top five things people worldwide wish they could do more of are spend time with family (44 per cent); travel (43 per cent); exercise (33 per cent); spend time with friends (30 per cent); and pursue their hobbies (29 per cent). Rest and relaxation were the other big themes that featured, as 27 per cent of people said they would want to get more sleep and nearly one-quarter (22 percent) would focus on mental health.
More sleep is a universal desire regardless of age – from Gen Z (27 per cent) to Baby Boomers (26 per cent) – although U.S. workers (33 per cent) crave more sleep than all other nations, with Indian workers desiring the least amount of additional shuteye (16 per cent).
While all nations rate spending time with family and travel as their top two desires, the remaining top five “more time” wish lists vary by country. Employees in France, Germany, U.S., and the U.K. listed “sleep more” as a top five-priority; U.K. and India workers wish they had time to learn a new skill or hobby; people in Mexico and India would spend more time watching TV, movies, or listening to music; and Mexican employees were the only ones to have “read more” in their top five. On the bright side, 62 per cent of all workers agree that their job offers enough flexibility to have a healthy work-life balance, while only 14 per cent either disagree or strongly disagree.
Regardless of age, role, level, or country, all employees wish they could spend more time developing new skills, as it was the top-rated answer for both individual contributors (44 per cent) and people managers (40 per cent) alike – with exactly half of Gen Z respondents and 47 per cent of Millennials craving more time to develop skills. A whopping 66 percent of employees in India wish they had time to develop new skills, with the U.K. (49 per cent), Mexico (48 per cent), and Australia (47 per cent) following suit as the nations where more professional development is desired the most.
Workers in Australia, the U.K., and the U.S. apparently feel the busiest, as they are most likely to spend additional time in the day simply catching up on work. While organizations in France need to watch out, as one in four French workers would spend extra time looking for a new job compared to the worldwide average of 16 percent and Mexico at only 11 percent.
Commenting on the survey, James Thomas, Country Manager, India, Kronos Incorporated said, “It’s not surprising to see that the survey reflects an aspiring young India seeking more opportunities to acquire a new skill, unlearn or re learn if they find spare time or added time as a key get away. It’s rather intriguing to see that they might put off a family vacation and instead put in those extra hours to acquire a new skill or a certification.”
“While family vacations are important, this might reflect the anxiety of workforces in India to skill themselves to today’s job specs better and also might be hinting at Indian employers seeking to acquire better qualified workers with right skills to the right jobs as traditional jobs are being replaced by 4IR jobs. Therefore, this can also be viewed as an opportunity for employers to provide the necessary support and learning opportunities to current employees as a means to retaining talent as well as driving higher employee engagement at the workplace,” Thomas added.