Hours and Work

There’s no correlation between hours worked and work done. I think this is why traditional corporate structures are starting to crack at the seams, and the distributed model companies like Automattic, MySQL, SocialText, and many others use will start to gain real legs and acceptance. The best example of this was at a place I used to work: after lunch everything seemed to shut down. Several people obviously got very sleepy after lunch and would spend 2-4 hours of the afternoon on auto-pilot. (This was me sometimes too.) It would have been infinitely better for them to take a one hour nap and get back to productive work than spend 3 hours in an obviously hampered state. Happy, healthy, well-rested people work orders of magnitude better.

8 thoughts on “Hours and Work

  1. Mix that together with two kids under 3. I really am not sure I should even be driving, forget configuring this evil content management system (no, not wordpress!).

    Throw a reduced/flexible schedule with possibility of work from home in there with a nap, and then we’re talking.

    Heck, you have to think the majority of the American workforce would actually be NO LESS productive working four days on/three days off – and would be a heck of lot happier.

  2. I’m a total nap fan – Siesta makes total sense. We used to do it in kindergarden (at least in most NYC public schools) but then they yanked it after that. What gives?

    While I was at MSFT napping was fine – people used to crash in their offices all the time (couches and futons were all over the place in peoples offices). It just depended on how meeting heavy the team you were on was. Even as a manager I was able to catch quiet time on most days, if I managed my schedule right.

  3. Microsoft seems to take a surprisingly sane approach to a lot of things, glad to hear they’re smart about naps too. :)

  4. Matt, you probably like working at Automattic, but to quote Peter Gibbons: “You see, it’s not that I’m lazy, it’s that I just don’t care… my only real motivation is not to be hassled, that, and the fear of losing my job. But you know, that will only make someone work just hard enough not to get fired. ”

    Take that as you will…

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