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Why do you say it's counter-intutive? Isn't the thesis largely the same as "Haste makes waste"? That idea has been bouncing around since at least 190 B.C.


You are right, i was unclear here. I didn't mean "urgency is poisonous" is counter-intuitive, but rather the advice in the blog-posting "we work less (4 days a week) to be more productive". The issue with urgency is that you often have no control over it. Can a startup beat a competitor by saying "let's work less"? I doubt. Urgency can also have the positive effect of concentrating all forces towards a certain goal.

The advice in the post doesn't say they "work less". They say they've worked fewer hours.

I wish I could find the study I read last year that found only about 20% of hours spent at work by a typical worker are productive, but I'll have to settle for this: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/31/fashion/31work.html

Working fewer hours does not mean you do less work. Indeed, the improvement in efficiency can mean you ultimately produce more. It's like if you drive a car at 100mph everywhere, you'll use more gas per mile than driving at 55mph (indeed, this was why that limit was set).

(Update: Heh, just noticed someone else used an automotive metaphor above!)

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