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Tell your boss: Billionaire calls for four-day weekends

Billionaire Carlos Slim wants you to work less.
Billionaire Carlos Slim wants you to work less.
Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images

Telecom magnate and billionaire Carlos Slim wants you to take more time off. Although you have probably never heard of him before, the man undoubtedly knows what it takes to be successful. After all, he is the world's richest man, a title he just reclaimed from Bill Gates last week.

During a business conference in Paraguay, the Financial Times reports, Slim called for a "radical overhaul" of everyone's working lives. According to the tycoon, we should be working fewer hours, but working longer.

"People are going to have to work for more years, until they are 70 or 75, and just work three days a week – perhaps 11 hours a day," the FT explains.

It seems that Slim believes that some of the focus that so many of us direct towards work and careers would be better served on other things. "With three work days a week, we would have more time to relax; for quality of life. Having four days [off] would be very important to generate new entertainment activities and other ways of being occupied."

This overhaul would also have the additional benefit of mitigating the financial concerns that many seniors have after retirement, as well as producing employees that are happier, healthier, and more efficient.

Slim does not just talk the talk, however. At his Telmex phone company in Mexico, employees who joined in their teens can access early retirement, and if anyone elects to work beyond retirement, they are allowed to do so while working only four days a week and taking home a full paycheck.

Slim is not the only employer who espouses the reduced-work schedule. According to the Huffington Post, Jason Fried's company 37signals has switched to a four-day work week during part of the year: "Better work gets done in four days than in five," says Fried. "When there’s less time to work, you waste less time. When you have a compressed workweek, you tend to focus on what’s important."