#WhatWorks Time Spent Doesn’t Equal Value Created

Liz Presson • 26 November 2014

It’s funny how when you’re working on something the answers appear in weird ways. As I was walking to grab a cup of coffee, I stepped on this random timesheet on the ground. Just minutes before, I decided to step away from my computer and take a break from a problem I’d been working on.

A few minutes into my walk with my headphones on, away from my laptop, and solutions started coming to me. The way it happened and the timesheet reminded me…we can sit at our computers for as many hours as we’d like, but time doesn’t equal value. No matter how long you sit and stare.

Scott Young once said it best, so I’m not going to recreate, but quote:

“Measuring work by hours spent, not tasks accomplished, is an accounting simplification from the industrial age. If you work in a creative or knowledge-based field, work completed matters infinitely more than raw hours invested. The saying, “what is measured, improves,” applies. When you measure your work by the hours spent, you don’t invest the same energy and focus that you would if you measured by tasks finished. Even if your job forces you to work on the clock, you can use your personal productivity system to get more done. Switching to a task-based system allows you to focus on work finished, not hours wasted.”

The #WhatWorks series.

Share this article:

As seen in: