In the corporate world, Elmo word of the day Almost always “innovation”. Despite the idea of ​​change instilled in PowerPoint, white-collar workers are not always quick to break with tradition. Meanwhile, blue-collar workers are trying to take the lead in changing the future of work.

During the summer’s strikes, manufacturing workers took center stage to reimagine the way we work and fight for better pay. The United Auto Workers, made up of the three major automakers, may be the ones who really hit the mark and truly innovate.They asked for increased wages, the return of pensions and Shorten the work week. The union wants to change working hours to a 32-hour week without any wage adjustments, focusing not only on raising wages during a very expensive period but also on better working conditions. They recently found an ally in Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.

“We’re seeing an explosion of artificial intelligence and robotics in this country. That means the average worker will be significantly more productive,” Sanders said. CNN’s Jake Tapper on Monday. “The question we have to ask ourselves as a country is: Who will benefit from this productivity? We should start serious discussions — and the UAW is doing so — about drastically reducing the workweek.”

Sanders talks about a new theory about an automated workforce that could create space to rethink the way we work and redistribute some of the grunt work to artificial intelligence, making workers more productive rather than taking over their jobs .A recent report comes from McKinsey It is predicted that by 2030, as many as 12 million occupations will change as employees’ careers change and some jobs are affected by the emergence of artificial intelligence.While it once looked like manufacturing was first on the conveyor belt of AI setbacks, it now appears Office work Even more in the line of fire. Saunders believes that AI taking over some of the workload could allow manufacturing workers and employees in other sectors to work four days instead of five.

“Americans are stressed for a dozen different reasons, which is one of the reasons life expectancy is actually declining in our country,” he said, adding that the new schedule would allow employees to spend time with their families. time. Be more actively involved in cultural activities and get more education. “People are overwhelmed. They have to take care of their children, they have to worry about health care, they have to worry about housing.”

“People are overwhelmed. They have to take care of their kids, they have to worry about health care, they have to worry about housing,” Sanders said, adding that the new schedule would allow employees time to spend with their families and be more engaged. Cultural activities, or, getting more education.

The four-day working week is one of several aspects at the heart of the future of work debate. As the United States begins experimenting with flexible work styles, traditional monotonous schedules begin to make less sense. Not only do employees want to work from a location of their choice, but they also want to escape the 9-to-5 grind, five days a week.

Last year, the nonprofit 4 Day Week Global piloted a four-day work week and measured the results of 900 employees at 30 different companies for half a year. Early results show that employees are equally productive in the new workflow and now have more time to deal with childcare issues and discover new hobbies. The majority of employers who tried it (almost 97%) said they wanted to keep a streamlined schedule. Another trial by the same group found that employees worked just as much in a 33-hour week as in a 38-hour week.

But despite its getting more popular and initial success, the four-day workday wasn’t gaining traction in the boardroom. The manufacturing industry appears ready to fill the void and push for shorter work weeks.

The current fight may be one step forward for UAW employees, and it may be two steps forward for humanity (or all humans who want a four-day work week). “In my view, if new technology makes our society more productive, then workers should benefit,” Sanders said.

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