I don’t think productivity is directly influenced by time alone. There are other important factors which make it or break it.
- There are days when I can get a lot done in lot less time and other days life moves slower than a snail.
- There are days when I can stay very focused and productive for up to 15-16 hrs and there are days when couple of hours of work seems like torture.
- There are certain type of tasks that I can get very productive very quickly and certain type of tasks which takes times to get into the flow.
- If I have a vested interest (financial, reputation, learning, etc.), I train myself to stay focused and productive longer (can back-fire as well.)
- There are phases of one’s life when one can clock in more hours and there are phases where one cannot; other things are higher priority. If forced (soft or hard), it usually leads to wrong behavior.
- I’ve seen many people who are very deadline driven (including myself.) I get a lot done when I’m working against hard deadlines. Yes, quality certainly takes a hit, but in many cases delivering slightly lower quality stuff is more important than not delivering at all or delivering later.
If we look at these various aspects, we get close to a start-up environment. And under these conditions, we do see teams being quite productive and delivering interesting products.
Applying this in a different context/environment usually back-fires.
What do you think?
This blog post was trigger by Tim Berry's blog post on Productivity Paradox: Maybe Less is More.