If you work more hours, will you be more productive?
This is a question that many of us wonder as individuals, and a question that businesses around the globe seek to answer.
Approaching this issue purely from a mathematical standpoint, you could conclude that working more would lead to more productivity. After all, it would make sense that increased input would cause increased output.
However, the answer to this question may not be that simple as employee burnout can be a factor as well.
GetCRM has put together a study that analyzes the relationship between hours worked and productivity. In their study, they examined the top 35 countries in terms of hours worked per week, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
This list features countries from a wide range of sizes, economic, and geopolitical backgrounds, including: the United States, Mexico, Russia, Luxembourg, Germany, Japan, Estonia, Costa Rica, and the United Kingdom. The study evaluated each country on how they performed in three different areas:
- GDP per capita per hour worked
- Average hours worked per week
- And average wage per hour
The data revealed some interesting, and somewhat surprising, results.
For example, Mexico works the most hours per week but were ranked last in terms of economic value per hour worked. Another interesting takeaway was that the top three countries in terms of economic productivity per hour were also countries who worked some of the fewest hours per week (all ranking in the bottom five).
Also, the graphic shows that there is actually an inverse relationship between hours worked and productivity – meaning the countries who worked more hours were less productive. In fact, eight of the ten lowest ranking countries for economic value per hours worked were in the top ten for most hours worked.
Another takeaway was that there was correlation between working more hours and being paid less on average. Over half of the countries with the lowest weekly wages were also among the top ten hardest working countries in terms of hours per week.
These results demonstrate that the path to increased productivity isn’t as cut and dry as simply working more hours, and there’s more to having productive employees. Check out the visual below to learn more.