Last week during the #u30pro chat, we asked the question, “What would you change about today’s typical workplace”. We ended up spending a lot of time talking about the concept of working from “9-5” and whether or not it’s necessary in today’s business world.
While 9-5 has never really been my thing (mornings and I don’t get along) I always just accepted it as the norm. It’s a concept that has been around for as long as I can remember. I’m assuming that it first started because in the past, without being physically present, communication and collaboration within an office would be impossible, and so 9-5 was established to have all employees present at the same time.
I will argue that the concept of 9-5 should now be eliminated…Here’s why:
- Different needs. Have kids? Have hobbies? Have a life outside of work? Working from 9-5 probably doesn’t suit your lifestyle.
- Different preferences. Everyone has a slightly different way of doing things. We work more efficiently at different locations, using different methods and at different hours of the day. Personally, I get the most work done at night.
- Increase in technology. If the company is worried about overhead costs (keeping the lights on), thankfully technology has allowed us to work remotely at any hour. With tools like Skype, Jira and Yammer, you can stay productive from home when it’s convenient for you.
- Inefficient. Depending on your job, you may not have the same workload from day to day. You should be able to work hours that align with your needs. Otherwise, you’re either wasting time, or you don’t have enough.
- Results matter most. Perhaps you’re concerned that your employees won’t work as hard, or as much, if given the freedom to choose their hours. If your employees are getting the job done, and showing results, then it shouldn’t matter.
I realize that not all industries can reasonably eliminate the 9-5. My argument is that to automatically implement a 9-5 schedule without considering these issues, is arbitrary and inefficient. If you analyze the needs of your company and it’s employees, and having everyone there from 9-5 is the most efficient, then by all means go with that system.
The debate is open. Should the blanket concept 9-5 be eliminated?