As the economy struggles to regain its strength, employers continue to squeeze as many hours as they can out of their employees. Sometimes this includes double, or even triple-hatting people. While this may seem like a good idea, you may have just made the same costly mistake as Henry Ford did in his early days.
Ford discovered that by increasing his employees’ schedules to 60 hours a week, he could suck more productivity out of them. But that burst of productivity lasted only about four weeks. Before long, the workers putting in 60 hours a week began producing less than their counterparts who worked 40 hours.
Tony Schwartz, a recognized expert on the subject says, “Many of us are so busy and so barraged by information that we’re reaching a point of saturation. There’s just not much room left in our working memories to deeply absorb anything truly new or complex.”
So what can we draw from all of this? It’s simple. Don’t overwhelm your employees, and sometimes maybe help protect them from themselves. We understand tight deadlines and frantic schedules are required from time to time if not frequently. The challenge is to not let this become the norm. This may mean an occasional intervention and perhaps a cultural mindset reset.