The 8-Hour Workday Will Soon Be a Thing of the Past. Here’s Why

The results just came in, Microsoft Japan recently experimented with a 4-Day Workweek. They gave 2,300 employees three-day weekends for five weeks straight, and what happened?

There was a 40 percent increase in productivity during August 2019 compared to August 2018.

There was 59 percent fewer pages printed and 23 percent less electricity used during the month. Thus, substantial savings on both electricity and office resources.

Finally, there was also an overwhelmingly positive response from employees: 92 percent of which, said they preferred working the four-day work week.

And while this may seem to be a new and revolutionary finding, it does however, makes sense.

According to a study done by vouchercloud in 2017, the average office worker spends only 2 Hours and 23 Minutes of their entire 8-hour workday being productive.

So, what are they actually doing with the other 5 hours and 37 Minutes?

According to respondents, they were doing things like checking social media (44 minutes), making hot drinks (17 minutes), and unrelated banter with colleagues (40 minutes).

Thus, employees tend to have too much time on their hands. And interestingly, Parkinson’s Law states that “work will expand so as to fill the time available for its completion.”

Hence, the 8-hour workday and 5-day workweek invites distraction and procrastination.

If you really wan’t something done, then set a shorter timeline.

Said David Kadavy,

“When you think you have 24 hours in the day, you invite yourself to procrastinate. If you find the 2-hour block during which you can do 3x the work, you can’t waste a moment.”

Although, what does this actually look like in the workplace?

Shorten Office Hours

The world’s most productive countries tend to have the shortest workdays.

The people in Luxembourg for example, are working approximately 30 hours per week (six hours per day, five days per week) and making more money on average than people working longer hours.

Hence, 6-hour workdays or 4-day workweeks may just be the future.

Allow and Encourage Remote Work 

At the current moment, about 50% of the US population works remotely on a regular or occasional basis.

However, does it make employees any more productive? Apparently, yes!

According to research done by Stanford, remote workers are 13% more productive.

So, laptops at the beach anyone?

Switch from the “Time-and-Effort Economy” to the “Results Economy”

Founder of Strategic Coach, Dan Sullivan, distinguishes between those who are in the “Time-and-Effort Economy” with those who are in the “Results Economy.”

When you’re in the time and effort economy, you don’t actually care about what work gets done. Instead, you’re far more focused on simply ticking away the clock. Because you get paid by the hour, all that matters is showing up.

When you are in the results economy, however, all that matters is the result. If you can’t produce the desired result, then you don’t get paid. And with necessity, comes productivity.

Said Dr. Thomas Stanley,

“Most affluent people in America are either business owners or employees who are paid on an incentive basis.”

This makes a whole lot more sense. Think about it: do you really get paid for your time at work, or do you get paid for the value you create?