We received over 1,300 responses to this week’s Career Center survey on whether you made MLK Day “A Day On, Not A Day Off” — for your employer. The majority of respondents, 66 percent, reported working on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
Not surprisingly, the top reason for putting in extra billable hours was that people just had work that needed to get done, even though no one specifically asked them to work. But it likely also had something to do with the fact that 32% of respondents who worked said their firm does not recognize MLK Day as an official firm holiday. Instead, some of these firms consider it a “floating holiday,” meaning that attorneys can either choose to take a day off on MLK Day or on another floating holiday.
What were some other reasons given for working on MLK Day?
- 20% said a partner or associate asked them to work on something.
- 17% said everyone else in their office was working.
- 8% said they needed the hours.
- Some notable write-ins include a client needed work done; a meeting, call or deposition was scheduled on that day; and working in an overseas office that doesn’t recognize the holiday.
Across practice groups, the percentage of respondents who worked on MLK Day was roughly the same.
And as might be expected, the more senior the associate, the more likely he or she worked on the holiday. For example, 74% of associates in the Class of 2002 said they worked, compared to 60% of Class of 2010 associates.