Maximum Productivity is not Linear to Hours Worked
I was recently referred to the following article:
This article discusses why working in “Crunch mode”, i.e. a lot of extra hours per week, sabotages the work environment and almost guarantees significant errors resulting in a loss of any effort gained in the short term by the longer hours.
I additionally would like to contribute that working a set block of hours during the day actually has very little to do with having high output for any creative job. Creative output comes in bursts, and based on every single creative person I’ve ever seen, I’ve never seen anyone that could truly produce an assembly-line like level of creativity evenly all day long. A much more accurate picture of their creative output looks like a wave, with extreme peaks and troughs throughout the day. During the troughs, if they have something non-creative to work on, they tend to work on that during the creative trough. When the creative person is experiencing a creative peak, they can easily accomplish a ton of creative work accurately. To try to force production of creative output during a trough basically won’t work. If there are no non-creative items to work on, the individual may as well not work at all so that their creative energy is recharged.
Imagine that creative energy feeds off of regular energy also, so if regular energy is at 0, creative energy can’t be as strong. If they burn off all their energy and then have to be creative, they aren’t nearly as productive as if they are creative in bursts, recharging energy in between. I argue that the creative person can do 40 hours per week, but it may not be a specific block of 8 hours per day for 5 days in a row.