Japanese Firm Orders All Employees To Get Identical Haircuts To Reduce Energy Use

Japanese corporate culture has always placed the good of the organization above that of the individual worker, going so far as to dictate workplace fashion and daily exercise routines. But haircuts?

At least one Japanese firm has jumped on the one-hairstyle-for-all bandwagon as part of a national campaign to reduce energy consumption in the wake of the Fukushima nuclear disaster last March, The Daily Telegraph reports.

Construction-firm Maeda Corp. is asking its 2,700 workers to adopt identical hairstyles. For men, the preferred cut is short on the sides and back but longer on top. For women, the company prefers a "cute" bob with a longer fringe that can be swept to one side.

"Our company is very keen on protecting the environment and we encourage our staff to adopt many environment-friendly actions," Maeda spokeswoman Chizuru Inoue told the U.K. newspaper.

"We are not sure of the data yet, but we believe if people have short hair they do not need to use their hair dryers for so long and they will use less water," she said.

Further, the company said it's easier to neaten such hairstyles after staff have been wearing hardhats at hot construction sites.

Maeda's action follows a request by the Japanese government asking businesses and households to significantly reduce the amount of power they use following the March 11 earthquake and Tsunami that destroyed the Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear plant on Japan's northeast coast.

Other companies have introduced power-saving programs, the Telegraph noted, including shifting production to weekends and nights.

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