40-Hour Work Week vs. Flexible Schedule

The recent emergence of the yuccie [read: young and urban creatives] sub-culture (yes, they have replaced the yuppie sub-culture) has brought all of us to confront the real deal when it comes to work: nobody works 40-hour weeks anymore. Admittedly, the current work force, which is composed of these yuccies, has been demanded more hours than usual – calling the extra hours and the extra work load as ‘necessary’. The 40-hour work week is nearly extinct, like how home phones that are eclipsed by smart phones and notepads became bygones through tablets, and we really can’t do anything about it.

According to a recent study made by the Wall Street Journal, surveys show that half or even more than half of managers and other rank-and-file employees work more than 40 hours per week, and nearly 40% of the force have seen their average hours worked increase over the past five years. The survey, which was conducted with 9,699 full time employees from eight countries, raises questions about “the sustainability of the current pace of work”; while some reports that their responsibilities at work “have increased”. The emergence of company-provided items too, such as remote-work software and smart phones, have kept a lot of people “tied to their work seven days a week”, with a few of them even working during leisure activities and the like. Difference of time zones is also a factor, where some managers and employees have to be responsive to clients from the other side of the world.



Instead of the usual 9-5 daily grind, some companies allow flexible scheduling as a remedy. This working situation is where workers can leave early, or report to work outside of the 9-5 norm but still render hours for that day. The second option reduces idle time at work and more personal time, and at the same time only requires the employee to start with work when there is actual work to be done. This could be ideal especially for us creatives, as we need ample time to gather inspiration to produce the best creations. On the other hand, the 9-5 schedule still works too, as it helps us set deadlines and maximize productivity within a set duration.