A Compelling Case for Shorter Work Weeks

shorter work weeks

Does your boss consider you lazy for not working more than 40 hours in the workweek? Most companies in America believe that the more hours you work, the more productive you’re likely to be. However research shows this rationale isn’t always the case where overall productivity and disposable income seem to increase as annual hours worked lessen. Also workers with more free time tend to be more loyal, are healthier and can ultimately be more productive and valuable in the long run.

Most countries in Europe favor a mid 30 hour work week compared to the 40 hours worked in the U.S, however, are nearly equally productive in terms of annual hours worked relative to the country’s GDP.

Then again, if you want to get ahead with your own startup, you may find yourself working 80 plus hour weeks. So the important thing to remember is to work smarter, not necessarily longer utilizing intelligent prioritization of tasks, resources and any help you can get to accomplish your goals.

Do you think you would be more productive if you could work less hours each day?

shorter work weeks infographic

[Click image for larger version]

Image: Inc


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2 Reactions
  1. I see the Netherlands has the least hours worked per week. I wonder how long that’s been the case for?

    It would be good to read a write-up here about the impact it’s had.