Re: Average Hours Worked

Subject: Re: Average Hours Worked
From: Bruce Byfield <bbyfield -at- axionet -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Sun, 28 Jul 2002 20:21:49 -0700


Sandy Harris wrote:

Yes, and to some (small) extent, that goes with the territory. As a
young person trying to build a career, you pay some dues: doing crud
work, being eager and working the extra, ... Within limits, you're
stuck with that. It's awfully easy for an employer to find another
new grad who is suitably eager if you're not.

True enough. But, from another perspective, the ideas of building a career and paying dues are simply other ways of enticing people to over-work. Let's face it:most people don't have a career; they have a pay cheque. As the hierarchy nears the top, there's room for fewer and fewer people, so most people will only move two or three levels during their working time.

What leaves young works vulnerable is that they often lack the experience to know what is reasonable. It's rather like a comment that Gwyn Dwyer made about soldiers, and why armies prefer young recruits: you can make a soldier out of a thirty year old, Dwyer commented, but it's harder to make him believe that he likes what he's doing.


A few years back, I saw a survey that analysed working hours for
management in a group of US companies. They gave two numbers. One
was how many hours an ambitious junior manager needed to put in to
have a good chance of quick promotion. The other was a limit beyond
which a lot of mangers started burning out or cracking up. The interesting part was that the two were only about 3 hours apart.

Another point that somebody mentioned to me off-line, after eight hours, most people's productivity goes way down.The tenth hour of work is rarely as productive as the first, or even the fifth or sixth. As a result, over-time quickly reaches the point of diminishing returns. I'm worked at several companies where the first thing I did each morning was correct the mistakes that I or somebody else made while working over time the evening before.

--
Bruce Byfield bbyfield -at- axionet -dot- com 604.421.7177

"Yes, I too have a particular monster
a toad or worm curled in the belly
stirring, eating at times I cannot foretell, he
is the thing I can admitonly once to
anyone, never to those who have not their own."
- Keith Douglas


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Follow-Ups:

References:
Average Hours Worked: From: ASUE Tekwrytr
Re: Average Hours Worked: From: Bruce Byfield
Re: Average Hours Worked: From: Sandy Harris

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