We should enjoy coming to work, we should be passionate about what we do, and we should produce results (regardless of coming in later than normal because its parent's day at school ... or because we're looking at non-work emails). Hey, this is idea of ROWE (Results Only Work Environment) and the idea is beautiful - it feels real nice.
In fact, whether you like it or not, I think you have to embrace some aspect of the ROWE concept. A primary reason to do so is this article from the New York Times, by Lisa Belkin. It seems we don't actually do that much work at work.
The article points to a Microsoft study - stating Americans spend 45 hours a week at work, but describe 16 of those hours as “unproductive.”
America Online and Salary.com found workers actually work a total of three days a week, wasting the other two.
And Steve Pavlina (a “personal development expert”) keeps incremental logs of how he spends each working day and finds we actually work only about 1.5 hours a day. “The average full-time worker doesn’t even start doing real work until 11:00 a.m.,” he writes, “and begins to wind down around 3:30 p.m.”
Ugh...wow. We all try to cover it up, but now we've seen it in writing. It must be true.
But wait .... good news! Just today I saw this New York Times piece. 'Workers who spend as much as 20% of their office time leisure browsing actually get more work done than workers who don’t'. Yes! So perhaps those folks browsing all day are your best workers?
And 'the longer you work, the less efficient you are', says Bob Kustka, the founder of Fusion Factor, a productivity and time-management consulting. Maybe realizing a work-life balance will bring a boost in productivity.
So, there you have it .... the moral of the story (though no easy task) is to get over when and how people work and focus more on the outcome.