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Economic labor - Research Paper Example

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Name Instructor Date Redefining Weisure Time It is undeniable that use of smartphones has increased to unprecedented numbers in the last few years across the world. This phenomenon has been more prevalent in economic power houses such as U.S. However, a worrying trend has been the impact of use smartphone penetration on work output among U.S employees…
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Redefining Weisure Time It is undeniable that use of smartphones has increased to unprecedented numbers in the lastfew years across the world. This phenomenon has been more prevalent in economic power houses such as U.S. However, a worrying trend has been the impact of use smartphone penetration on work output among U.S employees. Use of smartphones at the workplace has been criticized primarily because it seems to eat on the employer’s time. However, on the other hand, use of smart phones has increasingly enabled employees to interact with the outside world more conveniently and at a larger scale. This makes it possible for employees to tend to issues that would have distracted them from working for their employers. Luttenegger has argued “Weisure needs to be divided back into work and leisure as two distinct concepts, not only for the sake of the employee, but also for the employer” 260. However, in this paper, it is argued that time has never been so ripe to recognize weisure time as a core concept of production in modern business. Indeed, use of smartphones during work time has increased with time. As a matter of fact, smartphones have enabled life to be more habitable not only for employees but for everybody as well. With people becoming busier by the day, tending to family and societal issues has been significantly made easy by use of smartphones. For instance, an employee can be able to communicate with a sick child in hospital via Skype instead of seeking leave from the work place, which would otherwise have cost the employer more. Socialization has also changed from the traditional face-to-face to technology platform based socialization. Smartphones are increasingly replacing use of computers as gadgets of communication especially considering the number of mobile apps being released every day. At this age of information overload, it is difficult to tell the line between fair use of smartphones and overuse. However, people seem to be adapting to information overload with time hence reducing the worry among employers regarding the use of smartphones at the expense of the employers. Actually, it seems more plausible to posit that smartphones have become entrenched in human nature in modern times. Employers disregarding this painful truth can only be seen as “walking with blindfolds.” Luttenegger has made a strong argument that work and leisure needs to be treated as different entities in business concepts. According to his line of argument, an employee is either working or in leisure with a smartphone. His ideas are primarily based on Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Indeed according to FLSA, pay is only made for work done and not for any leisure related activity at work. Whereas FLSA seems fair to both employer and the employee, it does not take it into account that changes in society and human nature has made it difficult to separate work and “leisure” in smartphone use among employees. This is more important considering that most jobs in modern age actually require employees to have a smart phones as a tool of communication and work as well. Productive weisure time should actually be seen as a plus for the employer especially considering weisure makes it more favorable for employers to work. Requiring employees to have smartphones as a modern tool of trade and communication and requiring them not to use them for leisure at work is seemingly an exercise in futility. Labor output across the world has actually increased with time despite increased use of smartphones among employees. Although technology security issues has been raised regarding use of ICT platforms for personal use at work place, it is more realistic to focus on security issues than thinking of smartphones as leisure tools meant to deprive employers of valuable work time. Therefore, FLSA and other work related regulations should pace up with time and start considering weisure as a core element of modern business. It can be proposed that employers should be realistic and begin looking at weisure time as an acceptable part of modern society. When considering working hours, work output, and work deliverables, it is important to realistically consider that weisure time is here to stay and therefore put it into consideration. Separating the two entities as posited by Luttenegger may seem plausible when measured against FLSA. However, when changes in modern society are considered, work and leisure in regard to smartphones during work time cannot be separated. A general look at graph 2 suggests that U.S smartphone penetration has skyrocketed with time. However, graph 1 suggests that productivity of American employees has indeed increased with time. More interestingly, average overall wage has significantly remained low at all times. This can only suggest that weisure time has little if any negative effect on employee productivity. Graph 1 (Silvers 455) Graph 2 (Dediu web) Employers and employees should strike a balance as to how much weisure should be acceptable in any business environment. When employers take this as a reality and factor when structuring work and wages as well, there will be little disappointments if any. Employers should tune their organizational culture by putting into consideration weisure time. This way, it will be possible to run businesses in reality whilst at the same time ensuring that employers are not unfairly paying for hours that cannot be accounted for by the employees. Works Cited Dediu, Horace. When will the US reach smartphone saturation? 7 Oct. 2013. ASYMCO. Web. 11 November 2013. Luttenegger, Jana M. "Smartphones: Increasing Productivity, Creating Overtime Liability." Journal of Corporation Law 36.1 (2010): 259-80. Silvers, Damon A. "How a Low Wage Economy with Weak Labor Laws Brought Us the Mortgage Credit Crisis." Berkeley Journal of Employment and Labor Law 29.2 (2008): 455. Read More
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