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A Farewell To The 9 To 5 Office Workday

Business Express – by Albert Rees and Cassidy Reid

The 40-hour workweek in the United States dates back to the 1860s and the Chicago labor movement, when workers who often toiled in factories 12-14 hours a day, six days a week, went on strike to protest the long schedules they endured.  Today, over 150 years later, American enterprises now operate in a global economy that is insensitive to downtime and sleep. Prior to COVID-19, most American knowledge workers would spend 8+ hours a day – starting at roughly the same time every day – primarily performing routine tasks and did so because their organizations’ heartbeats had been largely set around that schedule.  Business processes worked because the predictability of inputs and outputs revolved around that schedule.

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