Go see The Rules of Productivity presentation. Now!

Rules of Productivity

Thanks for all the great comments on my last post on The Cult of Overwork.

It’s clear from the comments that:

  1. The Cult of Overwork is alive and well. Waaaay too many businesses still equate number of hours worked with productivity.
  2. This is hurting people!

In one comment, Jorge Bernal linked to a great presentation titled The Rules of Productivity, which you absolutely must read. Not only is it clear and concise, it also cemented my belief that overwork is generally bad for productivity. With graphs! I love graphs!

A few of my favorite takeaways from the presentation:

  • Crunch weeks deliver a brief increase in productivity but you need recovery time right after or productivity plummets.
  • When overwork becomes the norm, people think they’re more productive. They aren’t.
  • Knowledge workers should only work 35 hours/week.
  • There is plenty of empirical data from research into productivity.
  • One of the main proponents of the 40-hour work week was Kellogg’s. Not out of idealism but because it increased productivity for them.
  • Graphs!

Go check out The Rules of Productivity presentation. Now :o)

7 thoughts on “Go see The Rules of Productivity presentation. Now!”

  1. Interesting! I would guess most of know this intuitively anyway.

    What I was wondering, however, is whether the graph doesn’t idealise normal productivity by showing it flat. I suspect it would actually be more like a cardiogram reading. What do you think?

  2. I think that the 60 hours curve is not quite accurate (it seems to me that it becomes steady as of the 8th week), eventually when having your resources working 60 hours a week they will definitely start pondering quitting, or simply collapse (which leads to health issues, leading to many days being taken off by several members at the same time).

    Overtime scheduled in the project plan is one of the reasons project fail (check reason #2).

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