Why is overtime work preferred in Japan

Why is overtime work preferred in Japan Jobs

Many Japanese people work overtime. Although it has been decreasing recently, many people still consider overtime work to be a good thing. In this section I will explains why overtime work has become a virtue among the Japanese.

The first question we need to ask is: ‘When and why was the idea birthed; that working long hours is a good thing?’

The most significant influence seems to be the “peasant culture” of the Edo period (1600-1868).

During the Edo period, farmers accounted for 84% of the Japanese population.

In the pre-mechanized era, hard labor was the norm in agriculture, and labor was considered a virtue.

Later, with the advent of modern times and the mechanization of agriculture, many people, who had previously been farmers, turned into businessmen.

Therefore, it is thought that the idea of “labor is a virtue” in the peasant culture influenced the salaryman’s culture as well.

The second is “bushido”.

According to the Japanese, Bushido is considered virtues of love, endurance, and hard work.

Therefore, it is likely that working long hours at a company are considered a virtue.

The third reason is “defeat in World War II”.

After the defeat in World War II, Japan achieved rapid economic growth and became an economic superpower, known as “Japan as number one”.

Behind this was the strong desire of the Japanese people to win the economic war, even though they had lost the World War.

To win the economic war, the Japanese worked longer and longer hours.

This influence has remained even to date, and it is believed that long working hours and overtime work continue to be regarded as virtues.

Overtime work for overtime pay

In Japan, some people deliberately work slowly and work overtime to earn overtime pay.

This is especially true for those whose salaries are low and whose livelihood depends on overtime work.

Another problem is that many companies in Japan prohibit side jobs, so the only way to earn money is through the company.

Love to work

Believe it or not, some people love to work and do not mind working long hours. While many people properly complete their duties in the time it takes them to complete their regular hours, others get so absorbed in their work that their overtime hours become vague. Such people often like the sense of accomplishment of completing one task at a time by themselves, and they are often absorbed in their work. The person who loves his or her work does not dislike working overtime. However, many people do not like working overtime, and they should understand that.

Because going home is boring

Some people stay at work because it is dull when they go home. These people only find joy and happiness in front of a desk, as there is nothing for them to do at home. The problem about this these employees are that they do not stay behind at work to do serious work, they just stay behind for no reason. They work unnecessary overtime and receive overtime pay, which causes trouble for those around them and the workplace.

Family Circumstances

Some people want to remain in the workplace because of family reasons. These people experience family issues/crisis’s and feel more comfortable at work than at home. Fathers who are not getting along with their wives and children, children who are not getting along with their mothers, and others are in different positions. They think it is better to work for the money than to go home and act like an airhead. It is said that those who are not getting along with their families and want to stay at work are often middle managers with grown children. If the boss is working overtime, subordinates are less likely to go home, so overtime work becomes the norm in the workplace.