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If you look above, it’s not social media — which I bet most employers (as opposed to employees) would say. It’s actually water/coffee and bathroom breaks, which makes some sense: the former (hopefully not the latter) are ways to socialize with co-workers, and socialization/having friends at work is pretty important.

Here’s a couple of things I would add:

While we’re on this boss topic, check out this graphic from the same article above:


As you can see here, it’s actually upper management — the big dogs — who slack off and do these things more.

All this research was done by some group called BambooHR, and because much of HR currently seems to think their job is to protect senior management (I was actually once told that by an HR person in a job I had), we have to get this rationalization paragraph about the research:

This may be due in part to the increase in responsibilities for upper level management. The heavier the workload, the more necessary it becomes to take solace in a quiet bathroom stall. But the pressure to perform has caused the work-life balance to shift. The BambooHR survey found more than half (56%) of employees say they try to make up for time spent on personal, non-work-related activities by working at home or in the office after standard work hours.

Might be time to get off the cross, because some other communities could use the wood.

If you want to know why senior leaders slack off more, here’s the simple answer:

  • They can, and no one will call them on it.

If you think it’s because they’re so slammed and have to work at home, well, sure — maybe that’s true sometimes. In reality, that’s just Temple of Busy bullshit; it allows managers to use “I have such a high quantity of work!” as a replacement for “I’m good and productive at my job!” We love the quantity over quality argument, which interestingly contributes to how poorly most of us spend our time.

This is all standard ‘Let’s deify the executives and their slaying-dragons workloads!’ garbage. In reality, here’s the deal:



About Ted Bauer

Born and raised in New York, Ted has now lived in a variety of cities -- and currently calls Ft. Worth home. He's worked in numerous verticals, including education, sports, television, health care, and now the travel industry. His different experiences -- with cultures, and bosses both excellent and horrible -- shape a good deal of his writing, including at his personal Context of Things blog.

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