Have you ever eaten breakfast at your desk? In a BBC Magazine article entitled ‘The Office Breakfast’s Unstopable Ascendancy’, office and workplace commentator Lucy Kellaway, of the Financial Times, suggests it’s time to reconsider such behaviour. In The Guardian (Work ethics section) a reader asked; How can I avoid working lunches?
I’m being obliged to go to more and more meetings arranged over lunchtime. I feel resentful about it – why should I give up my lunch hour for unscheduled extra work? And the sandwiches they provide are always disgusting. Am I within my rights to refuse to attend such meetings? (Read comments)
What is going on? British workers, mainly because of heavy-handed management methods (imported in parts from our American cousin), are making an utter mess of personal time management. Apparently the average UK resident has in excess of eight hours less personal time than they did in mid-90s (read more). And, despite the average hours involved in a working week actually being in decline, a survey found that technology contributed to our workaholic culture.
I’m informed we now have something called iPhone Apps to help you manage your personal productivity (see here). Many of the issues surrounding poor time management are as a result of a lack of self-belief, and a lack of balls when it comes to standing up for your self. Apparently staff are working up to 10 extra days a year because they were unable to switch off BlackBerrys and mobiles after leaving the office (read more). There would also be little need for breakfast meetings, a working lunch or indeed after work networking cocktails, if some people put as much effort into their actual working day as they do blowing hot air around about it.
And what the hell is all this work excess and rushing about for? I’ll tell you, it has nothing to do with productivity, hardly surprising as we actually produce very little, in the main it’s all about two little words… Fear & Power.
Fear of being ignored, overlooked or overtaken and the power, comes from control you exercise over others when you reach higher levels in your organization. Today’s work ethics have very little to do with productivity and are more in line with, self-preservation, self-interest, self-promotion and self-indulgence in the Techno-Geekdom of our bollocks generating non jobs. Everyone aims to get to the top as quick as possible, earn the largest salary and bonus package and hopefully escape before their fifty. It doesn’t matter if you mess up from time to time, some occupations such as the police even reward upward failure, just so long as you can cover it up and it’s not discovered prior to the golden handshake and your flight to the Cote d’Azur.
FFS the working world is barking mad and the tail really is wagging dog!
- “Take Your Workaholism and Shove It,” Say Dutch Women (jezebel.com)
- Time Management Productivity Tip, Prioritize Your Plan, Then Take Action! (realgoalgetter.com)
- Time Management Is Key To Getting Work Done (npr.org)
- Leading article: The fiscal tail wags the military dog (independent.co.uk)
- Desk-fast (bbc.co.uk)