If you're "caught in the vice-like jaws of burnout", working those extra hours is impacting your well-being, no matter how much you might love your job.
Working overtime? Those extra hours might not be hurting your wellbeing after all – just don't tell Jeff Bezos or Jack Ma
Working too hard? Is that overtime making you feel like you're caught in the vice-like jaws of burnout? Well, keep on carrying on because far from negatively impacting your well-being, it might actually be good for you if you love your job. Or so says research from the ESCP Business School by Argyro Avgoustaki, an associate …
Thursday 20th January 2022 18:33 GMT Charlie Clark
The article doesn't go into any great deal about how conclusions were reached, but I thought it was long established that various biomarkers (concentration, memory recall, fat cells, cortisol, etc.) associated with long term conditions can consistently be measured with increased workload over time. I don't think there are hard and fast limits, but nearly everyone has them and most of us find out too late what they are.
Thursday 20th January 2022 19:25 GMT yetanotheraoc
Re: Donkey work
"long term conditions"
Yeah. At first they choose to work overtime, the more the better. And everything is peachy. Then they get burned out. And their manager starts to flog them to keep the productivity up. If you call them in the first phase, they give one answer. If you call them in the second phase, they give a different answer.
Hey El Reg: Please tone down the cynicism. For some of us, siesta is hard work. The longer my siesta, the more burned out I get. It's a vicious cycle. You should try to walk a mile in my shoes. They're over there under the hammock.
Thursday 20th January 2022 16:56 GMT the spectacularly refined chap
But what's the motivation?
I've been in places where overtime makes you feel better about work. Other places it makes no difference?
What are you spending the additional time on? If it is on your own workload, whether that be an assigned caseload or what happens to come in, yes OT allows you to get top of things, attend to housekeeping and so on. It reduces stress because you can see yourself making progress. Ditto for project work, if you know you make progress to the goals with reference to any internal deadlines etc that ultimately destressed you. This assumes you are being paid of course, unpaid time to keep on top of workload quickly creates resentment.
There are other places I've been where OT simply means more work gets allocated in which case it is neutral in terms of your work position. But could be bad if you need to de-stress.
I know one place I've been was a real pressure cooker environment due to the management culture, but they seemed to think they could get away with this by throwing money at you - regular OT was triple time and when they really wanted you it was quintupal. Paradoxically you're then in a no win situation: you can't help but feel bad turning down £100/hour but you know it will make you physically ill if you exploit it.
Thursday 20th January 2022 17:11 GMT Eclectic Man
Does it matter?
According to a Yougov survey, over 1/3 of us Brits think our jobs make no contribution:
Hard to justify overtime to yourself if the job is pointless. So I wonder whether any of the people in the sample thought that.
Of course that survey was published in 2015, so maybe things have got better since then.
Thursday 20th January 2022 19:46 GMT spold
Thursday 20th January 2022 21:00 GMT Anonymous Coward
Sometimes it's just a job requirement
Take a mediocre company like IBM. The only career path is through working massive hours and being on call 24/7. It doesn't really matter if you're any good at your job or what your job is. Just make sure everyone knows you're posted up 75+ hrs a week minimum. That's the only metric that goes into your performance review.
Thursday 20th January 2022 21:15 GMT Anonymous Coward
Re: Sometimes it's just a job requirement
Career path? I never worked based on someone's touted or spouted "career path". I worked on interesting problems, or problems no one else could do, and had 'job' satisfaction of the accomplishment kind.
As for 'path', well, that was determined by how well management responded. If they didn't notice, I left. (then they noticed...) If co-workers didn't notice, I left. (then they really noticed!)
I didn't mind being pinned down by a problem until it was fixed. I do mind being pinned down by problem management, 'cause you can't fix that.
Thursday 20th January 2022 22:18 GMT IGotOut
Bullshit detectors at max.
"Or so says research from the ESCP Business School... associate professor of Management and Almudena Cañibano, an associate professor in Human Resources Management.
So someone wth a vested interested in HR, picks a carefully selected group and gets results HR and bosses like to hear.
Having had a breakdown due to excessive hours and endless on call callouts I say FUCK YOU.
Now in a poorly paid job, doing over time when I and only I, decide I want to, in an interesting role with very little stress. I could not be more content with life.
If you hate your job, quit. Give up the stuff you don't need (I cope on a 1/3 of my old salary) and enjoy the one life you have.
Friday 21st January 2022 00:26 GMT TomPhan
If it's something you enjoy doing, and that's the only part you'll be doing, then you're not bothered about the extra time - but that's not realistic for most jobs because there's so many layers of bureaucracy involved that the instead of doing the coding (or whatever) you'll be completing spreadsheets and filling reports.
Friday 21st January 2022 00:35 GMT Chris G
I have lived in Spain for twenty years and I call mierde de toro on these survey results.
Pressure to work stupid extra hours that are mostly unpaid is implied at minimum almost everywhere and being honest with your feelings is likely to put detours in your career path.
I bet the survey was somewhat less than anonymous too. What kind of answers are you going to put if they can be linked to you?
Friday 21st January 2022 02:07 GMT ShadowSystems
500 test subjects? Is that all?
That's a statisticly insignificant number so miniscule it might as well be zero. In order to have results with any weight to them, you need a pool of test subjects that numbers as high as possible, with millions or billions being a reasonable minimum threshold.
"We asked 500 people if they liked being beaten with foam pool noodles filled with moldy tuna puree'." That's nice, but your sample pool is more akin to a thimble than a pool.
"We asked 500 million people if..." will be a more statisticly significant pool from which to draw any meaningful conclusion.
TL;DR: You need to ask more people to make your survey worth a damn.
Friday 21st January 2022 04:56 GMT msobkow
Friday 21st January 2022 08:53 GMT Potemkine!
Friday 21st January 2022 12:41 GMT Joe Drunk
Human Resources robot says working long hours is good for your health
Human Resources robot works banker's hours so has never personally experienced overtime but is certain that drones love their company so much they will not only sacrifice all of their personal life for it but cheerfully accept their fate when mass redundancies are made.
Silly Human Resources robot.