When asked for their top choice for an employer-sponsored holiday among several days typically included as "floaters", birthdays were the #1 option selected by a wide margin in a national survey of 500 adult office workers commissioned by Blumberg Capital Partners. The holiday question was part of a broader survey examining the impact of office building conditions on worker morale, productivity and motivation.
The complete rankings of the top choice holiday selected by participants is shown below:
- Own birthday - 46%
- Veterans' Day - 14%
- Presidents' Day - 10%
- Election Day - 10%
- Martin Luther King Jr. Day - 8%
- Halloween - 6%
- Valentine's Day - 2%
- Columbus Day - 2%
- St. Patrick's Day - 2%
This comes as no surprise to me. I have encountered the strong preference for birthdays as a holiday in a number of organizations. The preference seems particularly strong at those companies with one or more unions in place; workers rising from union ranks to take management jobs resent the loss of the birthday holiday (which I have been made to understand is a common union benefit).
As one gentleman put it to me: "Working on your birthday is ... well, it's unAmerican!"
Apparently he has a lot of company.