I work a lot. I really enjoy what I’m doing, so I work insane hours. But something I don’t always correlate in my mind. Is this 12+ hours a day working is really effective.
We all realize when starting a new venture you’re more or less expected to work insane amount hours beyond normal expectations. Some believe it’s a badge of honor that can determine the fate of your business. Take Elon Musk. He’s proudly exclaimed:
“Work like hell. I mean you just have to put in 80 to 100 hour weeks every week. [This] improves the odds of success. If other people are putting in 40 hour work weeks and you’re putting in 100 hour work weeks, then even if you’re doing the same thing you know that….you will achieve in four months what it takes them a year to achieve.”
Musk isn’t just sitting at his desk the entire time — he does a lot of traveling — but still, that’s not good advice for every entrepreneur out there. Research back to the 19th Century has discovered that businesses that have embraced the 40-hour work week were more productive and profitable. For many individuals, working more than eight hours per day can be damaging to a person’s health. Studies have also found “that doing more than 11 hours of work a day raised heart disease risks by 67 percent.”
Despite these findings, we insist on putting in lengthy workdays because we’re passionate about our businesses, have deadlines to meet or it’s just the corporate culture nowadays. I’m guilty of this, as are many of you reading this. The problem with this mentality, is that working more than 12 hours a day is actually killing your business.