The Atlantic published a very good and career-related article, To Work Better, Work Less. It was heavily shared on social media sites, and you know why it got heavy shares? Because, we all want money & success in the end. The general picture is that people work harder and more sharply & smartly when they work for fewer hours in a week and most of us are still working heavily but doing less at work. Despite the latest technology we have now to make our lives easier, the average (particularly American) worker still seems to find ways to burn the candle at both ends and as a result the quality of both our work and health, mentally & physically undergoes.
Smart Working is better than Hard Working
Of course, there is also the issue of culture in the workplace. The Atlantic notes that both Adam Smith and John Maynard Keynes proposed similar theories, indicating that technology allows us to produce more widgets in a given period, the amount of time we spend making widgets is expected to decline accordingly. Yet here we sit working a minimum of 40 hours per week and these are same 40 hours we worked in the 1920s despite the astronomical technology. Why is this case?
Side Note to discuss on: In capitalist machine that has raised our unprecedented heights economy, companies that benefit most from this seem terribly with their communist ideas to work for the good of society and to make sacrifices to achieve our goals, don’t they?
We might decide to simply slow down and work at a reasonable pace. The reason is, we will remain the same, an economic problem known as the tragedy of the commons. Although the group as a whole would benefit from the reduction of working hours, there is always encourage people to defect by acting in their own interests, hurting the group. If a person can earn more money or more curry favor from their employers by working more, they will. Human beings, as it turns out sometimes do behave rationally at least when it comes to serving their short-term interests.
So there was that. Nobody is going to be the leading bank in the bullpen to get up and say… Fuck all that Crap at 17:00 on Friday but each is too willing to say that Of course boss I can get that done this weekend. He also plays in the insidious concept of Contributors or do what those before you have done for no other reason than the fact they did. Who cares if working 80 hours a week will result in slightly higher output? That’s what I did dammit and that’s what you’ll do too if you expect to do in this society. You are reading Smart Working is better than Hard Working.
Productivity is the defense offered by supporters of weeks of work artificially prolonged. Of course, you can do the same job in less time, they say, but now you can get more work with the time you have leftovers! It’s great, certainly for the employer, and to a degree for the employee as well, I suppose. If the promotion is the result of mastering a set of skills and get more experience in a given theoretically lead to faster progress unit time. That’s great, but as I said a few weeks ago, Increased Productivity is just a fancy way of saying that you can have to do a job for an amount progressively cheaper. Again your success depends on how much work you are willing to do for free.
Basically being more productive gives you a better value for your employer. Now I’m not saying that employees should strive to be the wrong values, or – the economy depends on thriving businesses as much as employees do. But, where is the benefit to you in the development of proactive better value, especially in the form of overtime that no one can have even asked in the first place?
Regrettably, that will never change in the foreseeable future. For one thing, it would be a financial disaster: Imagine the reaction of investors was a company to announce that through greater efficiency, they would continue to pay employees the same wages to produce the same output; they only cut the work in two weeks. It would be bedlam; investors instantly devalue society, wondering why they left these Productive hours on the table. Smart Working is better than Hard Working.
It’s a section of our culture outside the workplace too. Even though as per Atlantic article… work has always been a means to an end (leisure). If there’s time to lean then there’s time clean, according to the old saying. To work at anything other than utmost capability is to underachieve and we are a nation of accomplished over-achievers. However, statistically impossible that may be…
Although the idea of working less for the sake of our own well-being begins to take root the economy is changing to preserve the sanctity of long & hard work week. In 30 years of living in a big state I do not know many people whose work is not billable, lawyers – consultants – contractors – accountants and so on. Although billing hours does not benefit the employee; at least encourages the company to maintain a long work week lest they leave dollar contracts on the table. If you are not a billable employee, tell me… Have you expanded service lately? And it has stagnated or declined ensuring there is always enough work available to perform more than 40 hours? You are reading Smart Working is better than Hard Working.
Outside the white collar … the world has quickly made the transition to a service economy that is ideally populated by employees receive an hourly wage. These are the people away from the Work less, Work Better argument; they literally have to work as many hours as possible to realize the full value of their annual salary equivalent. It is no coincidence that there is no shortage of reports detailing the amazing part-time and hourly jobs increase.
I am for the American worker maintains a reasonable schedule to have more free time. Not because I do not appreciate the success or work or anything like that; our economy will always provide opportunities for these people if they wish. Actually, I’m sure there’s a way to do without precipitating economic collapse. But until the young management consultants stop referring to colleagues who log less than 80 hours per week as weak and inferior- not much will change.