Piala Inc., a marketing company based in Japan, introduced a new policy in September that grants its non-smoking employees six extra days of paid time off every year.
Why? They listened to their employees.
“One of our non-smoking staff put a message in the company suggestion box earlier in the year saying that smoking breaks were causing problems,” company spokesman Hirotaka Matsushima told The Telegraph.
“Our CEO saw the comment and agreed.”
Piala Inc.’s headquarters are located on the 29th floor of an office complex, and employees who need a smoke break have to travel to the basement. Because of the distance, each break lasts around 15 minutes, and according to employees, that adds up quickly.
Despite the policy’s recent introduction, 30 of the company’s 120 employees have already taken advantage. Matsushima, for example, took his family on vacation for several days.
Even more importantly, the policy reportedly has encouraged four separate employees to quit the habit altogether, and according to Piala Inc. CEO Takao Asuka, that’s exactly the point.
“I hope to encourage employees to quit smoking through incentives rather than penalties or coercion,” he told Kyodo News.