11 Hours of Work Today = 40 Hours of Work in 1950?

11 Hours of Work Today = 40 Hours of Work in 1950?

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Jason Yang
Oct 17, 2011

How many hours of work would you honestly say you do each day? Not quite 8, you say? Well today is National Boss' Day, and instead of another crappy tie or "World's Best Boss" mug, get her/him something she/he really wants - get productive!

Productivity in the United States is continuing to fall, leading to high labor costs and many other issues we're not the type of site to really cover. The United States Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics (say that 10 times fast) has a slew of data on labor productivity and costs, providing detailed insights into how productive we are as a nation.

(Number of hours per week needed to produce as much as a 40-hour worker in 1950)

"An average worker needs to work a mere 11 hours per week to produce as much as one working 40 hours per week in 1950." This according to Erik Rauch (of M.I.T. so we know he's smart). So what the heck are we doing with our time and our money? Apparently we're using it to buy more stuff, which may explain why The Atlantic says we're not making more money even if the United States is the most productive country.

But while our work days are getting longer, are we actually making productive use of our time? From the 765 (and counting) search results for "productivity" from Unplggd alone, we're guessing no. Then there's a good question that GOOD asks - does all this new technology make us more productive workers?

So let's get get down to business and get productive. In honor of National Boss' Day, skip the gimmicks, gag gifts, and wasteful crap purchases. If not for your own good or out of the goodness of your heart, do it for your boss on this very special day.

More Productivity at Unplggd

Morning Routines

(Images: MIT: Productivity and the Workweek (Erik Rauch); Amazon; Flickr member Zak Hubbard licensed for use under Creative Commons)

(Sources: The United States Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics, Wikipedia: Boss' Day, MIT: Productivity and the Workweek (Erik Rauch), The Atlantic, GOOD)

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