Showing up for the sake of it
Ironically, despite the potential benefits of being seen in the office, employees aren’t necessarily more productive when they work overtime or face time. Despite this, workers still feel the need to perform, both in person and now digitally, because managers may not be aware that their employees aren’t actually completing any extra tasks.
In fact, the number of hours worked worldwide has increased rather than decreased during the pandemic. Over the course of the year in 2020, the average number of hours worked per day increased by more than half an hour. The idea is that I need to be online as well if everyone else is. Many managers just see the most noticeable individuals, so they accept those are the most useful workers.
This issue is relatively new. It was simpler to measure tangible outcomes when the economy was more centered on manufacturing: This is built, but this is not. However, according to Scott Sonenshein, a professor of organizational behavior at Rice University’s Jones Graduate School of Business in Houston, Texas, “as we’ve shifted to a knowledge economy, it’s much squishier to measure what output actually looks like.” As a result, managers frequently believe that employees are producing as long as they are seated at their desks instead of measuring something.