A Japanese Company Is Giving Extra Vacation Days to Employees Who Don’t Smoke

By all rights, the benefits to taking care of yourself are pretty obvious. You feel better, you’re more productive and in general can impart more joy out your work and personal life.

But at Tokyo-based marketing firm Piala, there is one more perk to not compromising your health — in particular, by not smoking — and that reward is extra time off. The company this fall instituted a rule for its employees that non-smokers are allotted six additional vacation days. They figure that it makes up for the 15-minute breaks smokers take to feed the habit during the rest of the year.

Twenty-two percent of Japanese citizens smoke, and Piala CEO Takao Asuka says he thinks his plan could help reduce that figure — especially since 35 percent of his employees are smokers. “I hope to encourage employees to quit smoking through incentives rather than penalties or coercion,” Takao said in an interview with The Japan Times.

And as bad as Americans are at taking vacations — last year 54 percent of U.S. workers didn’t take all of their vacation days — Japan has an even tougher time with work-life balance too. 2016 data found that 20 percent of 10,000 Japanese workers surveyed reported that they worked more than 80 hours of overtime every month.

Nina Zipkin – Entrepreneur – 3 Nov 2017