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Working 9 to 5

Remember when working a full day was 8 hours between 9 and 5? It was such a commonplace that they made a movie with that title, and anyone that worked outside of those hours were considered to be working “banker’s hours” (no offense intended.)

Well, a lot has changed over the years. An 8 hour day is no longer 9 to 5. For that matter, what’s an 8 hour day anymore? With Telework, anytime access from any device, BYOD, and other initiatives, who works just 8 hous anymore? I’d be curious to hear your comments on this topic.

My day typically starts around 7, when I get to my home office, check email for the day, and have my first cup of coffee. Being on the east coast working for a west coast company, there is typically a good number of emails waiting for me in the morning. After more coffee and a shower, I head back to the office to start my day. Now is when the work starts.

There are some benefits to starting 3 hours earlier than the rest of the team. That means (usually, not always) 3 hours of quiet time to get some work done before the rest of the team gets online. Once that happens, the collaboration begins. Between email, IM and the phone, the day is pretty crowded.

So, you would think that starting early means ending early, right? Wrong. Working for a west coast company means that the team is online 3 hours longer in the day. That means that leaving the office at 6 is 2 hours minimum earlier than the rest of the team. That’s a lot of lost communication. So, I typically end the day officially around 6:30, have dinner, relax for a few, then back to the office around 8:30 to catch up on what I missed. Once that goes away, I can call it a day, usually around 9:00 pm. The next day, it starts all over, with the folks on the west coast that worked late, or the ones in Europe that started at normal times.

So, when was the last time you worked a normal 8 hour day? Technology today has made it easier for us to get the job done, but it also seems to have made our days longer. I’d be curious to hear from those that manage to get done after 8 hours these days. I’m suspecting most are like me, and 8 hours no longer means a 9 to 5 day.

Cheers.

jc

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