Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Myth of the 8-hour workday

The typical workday (which I was never a fan of to begin with) starts at 9 a.m. and ends at 5 p.m. Eight hours, five days a week seems like so little to ask when there are 24 hours in a day and 7 days in a week. Forty hours per week out of an available 168 total hours per week comes out to less than 25 percent! This is already an abysmally low percentage of time spent working, but it's only part of another insidious issue.

The mythical 8-hour day is just that: a myth. Most workers come nowhere close to working that many hours. Consider that there is an hour lunch break. Why you have to eat on company time and get paid for it is beyond me. Then, employees typically waste time with trips to the bathroom, water cooler, chatting with other employees, etc. That just takes away even more work time. If you're not keeping a vigilant eye on your workers, they could be doing as little as 2 hours of actual work a day, but you're still paying them for 8! That's just outrageous.

It's imperative for the PHB to keep his workers actually working and coming close to earning their pay. The best way to do this is to keep close tabs on what everyone is doing. If you can swing it, cut out the lunch break. Your workers can eat on their own time, before and after work. Finally, since you can't actually squeeze 8 hours of work in the allotted time, find ways to extend the workday as long as possible. If you can keep everyone in the office for 12 (better yet 16) hours a day, you might get your full 8 hours worth out of them.

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Joseph M. Scandura, incompetent moron, idiot, pompous, stupid, failure, asshole, arrogant, bullshit, micromanager of the year, technologically clueless, ignorant, condescending, senile, dementia