France urges work-life balance while some American business says ‘don’t be the French’

France, bless their Franco hearts, has a new law that gives employees the right to ignore business emails after hours, but only if the company they work for has more than 50 employees.

“But it is born of the enlightened view that it is actually beneficial for people not to work all the time, and that workers have the right to occasionally draw the line when their employer’s demands intrude on evenings at home, treasured vacations or Sundays with friends and family,” the New York Times’ Alissa Rubin wrote earlier this month.

Note her use of the word enlightened.

These sorts of things — enlightened approach to people — can scare some in the American business community.

Grant Cardone, a self-made millionaire, according to CNBC, writes today that they’ve got it all wrong and if you believe in a work-life balance, you’ve got it all wrong too.

He says you should be focusing on earnings, not comfort.

Middle-class Americas want nothing more than to be comfortable, even if that means they never will get rich. Comfort is king for too many people. The problem is, if you are stuck making $50,000 a year you will never get out of being uncomfortable, because you have nothing left over financially.

If you become comfortable, you take less action. When you take less action, you stop pushing to fulfill your potential.

Seeking comfort over financial freedom is what separates the moderately successful from the most successful.

Cardone also offers the old cliche: If you find your passion, you’ll never not want to be “working.” This, of course, is nonsense since the purpose of finding a work-life balance is finding a balance between and among various passions. Also, some days just stink, no matter how passionate you were when you clocked in.

“Take this lesson from the French: Don’t be them,” he writes.

“Having recently moved back to the States from Europe, I have seen the French up close and I have to tell you that they are pretty happy with their lifestyle,” a commenter on the NY Times article responds. “As a result, they have an allegiance to their employers and are more engaged while at work. They have struck a balance between work and life that not only produces less stress and better health, but also more productivity. The basic motto of the French worker is that no one lie in their deathbed and say, ‘I should have worked harder.'”