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It's Friday, Does Your Boss Know (or Care) Where You Are?

By Laura Oppenheimer in Miscellaneous on Jun 1, 2007 2:15PM

2007_6_office.jpgWhat we are writing right now probably isn't going to be read by half of our readers. Or that is the conclusion we have come to after reading this article in today's Sun-Times, which tracks the evolution of "summer Fridays." If you don't know what "summer Fridays" are, then you probably don't have them. And if you do, then Chicagoist is insanely jealous of you, you lucky bastard.

Essentially, companies are realizing that during the summer employees either don't get much work done on Fridays, or don't have as much business on Fridays. Though Chicagoist doesn't get any special breaks on Friday, one of the companies we work with does; they work nine eight-hour days over two weeks, and then take every other Friday off. Other companies do it differently. Ad agency DDB/Chicago keeps "summer hours" between Memorial Day and Labor Day; employees go in a half-hour early every day in order to leave at 12:30 on Fridays.

Mary Corbitt Clark is the executive director of Winning Workplaces, an Evanston-based not-for-profit organization that supports small businesses. "About 10 percent [of workers] talk about 'short Fridays' or the flexibility to build in 40 hours either in four days or in nine days, so every Friday or every other Friday is off," she told the Sun-Times. "Things tend to get quiet after noon on Fridays."

Chicagoist is mostly intrigued by this phenomenon because we are insanely jealous we don't get it. Also, we aren't sure we understand how it works. Most businesses don't adhere to a strict 9-5 anyway. So if you are working more than 40 hours in a given week/80 hours in two weeks, shouldn't you never have to work on Friday? Even if it is cold and rainy outside? Chicagoist is always looking for excuses to cut out of work. And it looks like we aren't the only ones. According to a new survey, 39 percent of employees working full time have called in sick to work to enjoy a day off during the summer vacation season. And there is even a name for it: Seasonal Absence Syndrome. Sounds much more pleasant than its winter counterpart.

How about you? Do you have the "summer Friday" hook-up? How does it work?

Image via "The Office."