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View Full Version : Awhe-awhe-haw. Sound like my kind of country.


Loose rivets
22nd Feb 2013, 03:03
Also sounds like doing a technical course at Toulouse.

Nice restaurant, shame about the course. (sung to the tune of Nice video, shame about the song. Not The Nine O'Clock News - Nice Video, Shame About The Song - YouTube

No, nothing about the French issue, but just a moment to look at the delectable Dr Stephenson. :E



"They get one hour for breaks and lunch, talk for three and work for three. I told this to the French union workers to their faces. They told me that's the French way!"


BBC News - French criticise 'ignorant' comments by US tyre boss (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-21530619)

Tableview
22nd Feb 2013, 05:39
Sounds about right for French working practice.



Arrive 0830.
Walk round snogging each other and exchanging germs for 30 minutes
find hapless colleague and go outside for coffee and cigarettes
return, switch on workstation
examine contents of pockets/wallet/nose/underpants (yours or someone else's) whilst waiting, or play with 'phone
read newspaper/Faecesbook
stop to preen in mirror for 10 minutes on way to lunch (precisely 12 o'clock)
return from lunch at 1315 in haze of rosé fumes, via toilet
smoke/coffee break
fill in time sheet to justify wasted day
get ready to go home, departure pattern is reverse procedure of morning arrival pattern

When they're not doing all this, they're 'EN GREVE'. No wonder they call it 'La Belle Vie'.

Also forgot to mention they have about 211 public holidays a year.

Wonderful!

wiggy
22nd Feb 2013, 06:25
May be true in some offices, but isn't that the case in many countries?

I know of some outdoor workers round here in La France Profonde who start work at first light. Yes, they do take a long lunch break, but ultimately finish late PM or early evening. FWIW the local "garbos" come round in the early hours (often 0400 -0500) to collect larger items - free of charge BTW.

Where the French system does fall down is the social charges that the employer gets hammered with and the fact that it's seeming impossible to fire an under performing employee without the employer being liable for pension and social charges for life.

Also forgot to mention they have about 211 public holidays a year.

Including weekends? You forgot to mention that unlike the UK if a "public holiday" falls at a weekend the workers don't get the proceeding Friday/following Monday off in lieu.

sitigeltfel
22nd Feb 2013, 06:31
I have a number of tradesmen renovating one of my places here, electrician, plumber, tiler, plasterer etc.. Their daily schedule is more like this.

8.00 arrive and start working
10ish stop for coffee and a fag
12.30 quick visit to the boulangerie for a sandwich.
1.30 back working again
3.00 another coffee and fag
7.00 tidy up and go home

A few weeks ago they knocked off at 6pm for a few days as the electrician had to cut the power and there was no light.

These guys are all self employed and they need to put in the hours to make a living, unlike the feather-bedded public service "fonctionnaires" and unionised factory workers.

treadigraph
22nd Feb 2013, 06:51
Sacre bleu, Tableview, that's uncanny - you have described almost precisely a former* colleague's working day. Do you know, I hadn't the slightest idea she was French.


*She got made redundant - irritating as ever, she got a largish wodge of money to finance a baby production line...

radeng
22nd Feb 2013, 11:36
At one time, there was a so called departmental secreatry for our group. Her work pattern was similar to that depicted by Tableview, except the work breaks were shorter. On on occasion, it took her 23 working days to get round to typing a letter for me - this was in the pre desk top computer days.

But she was blonde and shapely and not dumb - just played the system.

The SSK
22nd Feb 2013, 12:10
In 1969-70 I spent a year working on BOAC check-in at LHR Terminal 3 (sorry, Oceanic Building). We worked a pattern of six days on (a late-late, a late, two dayshifts and two earlies) and three off.

We worked in teams of two or three and each team was rostered to deal with either two or three departures during their shift. Each flight would be opened up two hours before departure and closed 30 minutes before. So if you were on a two-flight day you were looking at 3 hours’ actual work, otherwise 4h30.

The first thing that happened on arrival was to be sent for coffee and/or breakfast (there was a staff cafeteria just behind the office). Lunch breaks were flexible but always sufficient for a trek to one of the staff restaurants in the control tower or one of the other terminals. There would always be an afternoon break for the dayshift. And you were always sent home early. When it came to the late-lates (3 till 11:30), only one team was needed for the last flight that closed at 10the others would be sent off round about 8:30-9. If you were still there beyond 10:30 you were entitled to a company limo ride home.

In between times, admittedly, you might be asked to cover for colleagues who were taking one of their breaks, and two desks – first class and early check-in, had to be manned throughout, so it was a pain to be rostered onto either of these (although F/C was a doddle and you would get to meet the celebs). Otherwise you just hung around the office chatting, and for a 20-year old surrounded by all these glorious girls – most were ex-stewardesses – that wasn’t really a hardship.

It was absolutely the best year of my life. Wish I had a ‘rewind’ button.

Hussar 54
23rd Feb 2013, 19:07
First time living here in the mid-70's, it was more or less as Tableview has described....Had a really great couple of years flying and then an even better couple of years of ' back-office ' when the only times I did any work was when I was so bored that it was a decent alternative to the newspapers....

But would have to say it has changed a bit since those glory days - but note I said ' a bit '....

Wiggy has it right - those people who are self-employed seem to work bloody hard compared to their equivalents that I've seen in action, particularly in the UK and Spain....We had a new kitchen and a new bathroom fitted last year - both done, and really good quality, in half the the time we had budgeted for....

On the other hand, there are still incredible levels of sloth to be encountered everytime you have the misfortune to have to deal with just about all the public and semi-public organisations....

I once read, perhaps here on PPRuNe, that in Provence we have ten different words equivalent to the famous Spanish MANANA but none of them convey the same sense of urgency....

OFSO
23rd Feb 2013, 21:20
Sounds about right for French working practice

Since Tableview has introduced the subject on behalf of the prosecution, the evidence may be queried....

When I worked regularly in Paris, or at least more regularly than today, I used to pop into a bar off the Av Lowendahl/Suffren for a coffee and cognac and sandwich before starting work. I was always amazed at the number of my colleagues having a glass of wine at 07:30 each morning. For me, wine is after-lunch or after-dinner, but pre-breakfast ?

OFSO
23rd Feb 2013, 21:25
the famous Spanish MANANA

Here in Catalunia it is "deman". The artisan's working day is.

0800-0900 work
0900-1000 breakfast
1000-1300 work
1300-1400 lunch
1400- 2100 work*

* Yes, nine p.m. As a householder I have lost count of the number of times we have groaned "why don't they finish and go home !" If asked, the workers say "but we haven't reached a point we can stop at yet".

I must confess, several times we have had German workers in the house. Their working day is

0800-1300 work
1300 onward: disappeared. Unless they are presenting a bill.

wiggy
23rd Feb 2013, 22:54
I used to pop into a bar off the Av Lowendahl/Suffren for a coffee and cognac and sandwich before starting work. I was always amazed at the number of my colleagues having a glass of wine at 07:30 each morning. For me, wine is after-lunch or after-dinner, but pre-breakfast ?


Mais non, personally I find cognac and the likes of Pernod/pastis, both much favoured by the locals, a little "sharp" with the morning croissant. I find a glass or two of wine much more palatable....certainly helps get one in the right frame of mind before firing up the chainsaw for a morning's tree felling, or a day dealing with the odd functionaire over some trivial matter....... :E:ok:

KAG
24th Feb 2013, 01:46
Me that's 3 working days, then 7 days off each period of 10 days (true), and yes I am ashamed :O:O:O:O:O:O:O:O:O:O

Sorry about this personal ashamed but a bit selfish satisfaction, let's come back to the subject:

Here are the numbers, everything else than that is blablabla, hearsay and old ladies bored talk: List of countries by GDP (PPP) per hour worked - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_GDP_(PPP)_per_hour_worked)

Tableview
24th Feb 2013, 07:39
And of course we all know that Wikipedia is absolutely accurate all the time. Not to mention that your data are out of date. Let's maybe come up with some figures since France openly admitted to being a communist state.

But as always, KAG, don't let facts get in the way of your expressing your view.

One only has to look around any workplace in France (public sector or large state subsidised companies) to see the laziness. The irony is that the French are remarkably good at running companies outside of France, but useless in their own country.

beaufort1
24th Feb 2013, 08:24
Don't forget the whole country stops for an additional hour every day so the populace can buy a 'baguette' twice a day as they don't keep longer than a couple of hours. :rolleyes:

KAG
24th Feb 2013, 09:14
Don't forget the whole country stops for an additional hour every day so the populace can buy a 'baguette' twice a day as they don't keep longer than a couple of hours.You forgot the ones spending hours on pprune JB when at the office :eek:

Metro man
24th Feb 2013, 09:29
Amazing what a difference there is in the work ethic of those whose income is dependant upon their performance versus those whose income is guaranteed just for showing up (sometimes not even going that far).

Self employed with bills to pay - show up quickly and do the job properly.

Public sector/unionised private sector - do it as and when they feel like it, they're getting paid anyway.

thing
24th Feb 2013, 09:31
Pesonally I 'work' for three and a half days a week and get weekends, public holidays and four months of the year off. I don't earn a fortune (could if I wanted) but I earn enough to do the things I want to like flying.

I used to work all the hours God sent but weirdly I still used to have the same sort of money left at the end of the month as I do now. I had a major rethink when I got to 50 and came to the conclusion that work gets in the way of life and I do as little work as possible now.

KAG
24th Feb 2013, 10:04
Public sector/unionised private sector - do it as and when they feel like it, they're getting paid anyway. I understand some people have to work for the government, some have to be civil servant...
The army for example. I remember when I was a military my basic salary was not that great, it improved with a speacial "jump bonus" and with the missions overseas, but otherwise the salary was very normal, and I didn't have a "life contract" (not that I wanted one anyway). My job was a bit more dangerous than the average civil servant, and was definitely more demanding in many aspects, while I didn't have the life "job security" a "normal" civil servant has.

In addition, I really have a hard time accepting that for the same level of education we have 2 different kind of citizen, the civil servant who are protected WHATEVER HAPPENS and all of the others. It doesn't sound like "equality" to me (not that I beleive in perfect equality though...).

I can think and look at it in many different angles, I am still not convinced. I know some civil servants (civil servant firemen and some others) are really trying to do their best when working, but I still fail to understand why we should have so many civil servants that creates in fact 2 kind of citizen.

hellsbrink
24th Feb 2013, 10:13
but I still fail to understand why we should have so many civil servants that creates in fact 2 kind of citizen.

It's called Socialism, KAG, the very thing you have tried to defend on countless occasions.

Tableview
24th Feb 2013, 10:16
Brilliant HB!

I was about to point out to our friend that he is truly 'hoist by his own petard!' but you beat me to it.

Metro man
24th Feb 2013, 10:26
"The problem with socialism is eventually you run out of other peoples money"

Margaret Thatcher

airship
24th Feb 2013, 13:35
French minister hits back at 'three hour day' attack (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financialcrisis/9885369/French-minister-hits-back-at-three-hour-day-attack.html)The French industry minister who received a letter lambasting his country's work ethic has retaliated by telling the US boss who sent the insulting epistle that he has "a perfect ignorance" of France: Arnaud Montebourg, minister for industrial renewal in France, was subject to a written barrage of abuse from Maurice Taylor, chief executive of US tyremaker Titan, after the French politician appealed for financial support for an ailing Goodyear factory.

Mr Taylor berated French workers for putting in just "three hours" a day, and said his company would be "stupid" to invest in the loss-making tyre plant in Amiens, northern France.

"The French workforce gets paid high wages but only work for three hours. They get one hour for breaks and lunch, talk for three and work for three. I told this to the French union workers to their faces. They told me that's the French way!" Mr Taylor wrote.

Mr Montebourg, who declined to comment on Wednesday, added his voice to a rising tide of outrage in the Gallic nation in a written response telling the Titan boss "your words, as extremist as they are insulting, show a perfect ignorance of our country." : He went on to point out that since Titan is "20 times smaller" than "French technology leader" Michelin, which is "35 times more profitable", Mr Taylor "could have learnt and gained enormously from a French base."

If M. Montebourg is correct, why should France take lessons form any midget USA type manufacturer, especially as the company (but especially when the CEO apparently has a huge ego far exceeding anything he has in his pants) which doesn't nearly anywhere compare to his company's place in the world of tyre manufacturing globally? :confused:

hellsbrink
24th Feb 2013, 14:12
If Montebourg is right, why don't Michelin buy the plant and close one of the sites in, say, Hungary or one of the 14 sites in the US?


After all, they are bound to be making more profit per plant in France if Montebourg is actually right.......

airship
24th Feb 2013, 14:45
We don't want to hear from you hellsbrink. We really wanted to hear from the Titan...?! Why are you attempting to come to the rescue of the Titan? Did you forget your place? (Ie. UK lost her "AAA" status...) :ok:

Matari
24th Feb 2013, 14:59
Ah Michelin, the epitome of corporate social responsibility. Don't dig too deep into their history, airship. It ain't all five stars and fancy maps.

hellsbrink
24th Feb 2013, 15:13
We don't want to hear from you hellsbrink. We really wanted to hear from the Titan...?! Why are you attempting to come to the rescue of the Titan? Did you forget your place? (Ie. UK lost her "AAA" status...)

Aww, diddums. Did the nasty man point out how much a failure your argument was?

Maurice Taylor, of Titan (not THE Titan as you wrote), has said clearly what the issues were. He doesn't need to say more. And I guess the truth REALLY hurts....


Just think of this

Renault
Peugeot Citroen PSA
Alcatel-Lucent
Sanofi (moving R&D to the US)
Goodyear
Air France/KLM
Arcelor Mittal (closures put back to June but capacity still cut back, meaning jobs lost)
Carrefour

All of the above are major companies cutting jobs in France NOW, plus the other reports saying that 1000 factories have closed in the last 3 years. Now why would they do that if France was actually "competitive"? Hell, even STIF, a regional council controlled by the same sort of Socialists as Hollande, have closed their call centres in France and outsourced them to Morocco so when they see that the writing is on the wall and production/services MUST be moved elsewhere then what do you expect businesses to do?


But I know you won't answer the question, you will just return to bluster and insult instead as even you know what I am saying is actually true but you just won't admit it.

Metro man
24th Feb 2013, 22:16
Close the loss making tyre plant in France and move production to Eastern Europe or Asia. Much lower costs, less bureaucracy and workers who will do a days work for a days pay.

Export tyres to France, problem solved as long as there are people in France with jobs who can afford to buy tyres. Possibility of selling tyres in country of manufacture now that incomes are rising as jobs are being created.:hmm:

airship
25th Feb 2013, 11:36
Metro man wrote: Export tyres to France, problem solved as long as there are people in France with jobs who can afford to buy tyres.

You got the "hole-in-one" there! Your east-European-manufactured (French) Renault car prize is waiting for you at the 18th hole... :ok: