Data on why knowledge workers can’t be productive 8 hours/day

This has been said before, but for some reason, we seem to ignore it. Knowledge workers can’t produce quality output 100% of the time on a full-time job. But we still act as if we could.

Factors disturbing our utopia are internal, as well as external.

  1. [from] over 225 million hours of working time, we found that the average knowledge worker (someone who deals with information for a living, like a writer, developer, designer, or manager), is only productive for 12.5 hours a week. That’s roughly 2.5 hours a day.
  2. people tend to spend 25%–30% of their computer time at work on communication like email, work chat like Slack, or video calls like Skype
  3. most people multitask during 40% of their productive time

» Read more about why we’re terrible at planning our time.

The idea is to stop planning too much work volume in your day. No wonder we complain all the time about our lack of it. Curious thing, isn’t it?

One of the most frustrating things about the modern workplace is not feeling like you’re making meaningful progress. And while you might get paid for 40 hours of work each week, you can’t realistically schedule 40 hours of work.

And remember, even if we keep lying to ourselves that we can work 8 hours/day on full speed and focus, we simply can’t. The way we work needs to change for so many industries and companies.

| image source.

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Andra Magda

Writer with a degree in Psychology, living in the heart of Transylvania, I freelance for companies and publications.

I write about work, failure, personal experiments, and creative industries.

I don't use social media, but I do share updates via my monthly newsletter. It’s like a magazine, delivered to your inbox.

Andra Magda

Writer with a degree in Psychology, living in the heart of Transylvania, I freelance for companies and publications.

I write about work, failure, personal experiments, and creative industries.

I don't use social media, but I do share updates via my monthly newsletter. It’s like a magazine, delivered to your inbox.