Clock-In…Clock-Out…Kill Myself: Gen Y Hates 9-to-5

This is what my morning usually looks like…

6:30am- Alarm clock goes off

6:31am- Look at my phone and think “No f*$%ing way”…hit snooze

6:50am- Second alarm goes off

7:15am- Realize I slept through the second alarm, realize that I have to be out of the house in 15 minutes; yell “F&$%”

7:25am- Somehow manage to get dressed and somewhat resemble a human being

7:30am- Turn on car only to find that I have no gas (always a wonderful start to the day)

8:20am- Arrive at work, 20 mins late, frustrated and exhausted

8:21am- Run to time clock, clock-in, machine reads “Kayla couldn’t get her ass out of  bed, 21 minutes late; failure at life”

So that’s great. I get to work and already I’m in a bad mood and can’t breathe properly since I just ran from my car to my office. Now I’m forced to start working, but I can’t, because I’m starving. So I run to the cafeteria and grab an omelette so that I can actually function. By the time I actually start working, it’s about 9am.

This is what my afternoon sometimes looks like…

I really don’t feel like working. Like, at all. But ok, fine, I’ll do something. My boss asks me to do a Progress Report for her. It takes me 2 hours. Done for the day. I really just want to read the news and all the blogs that I follow regularly. I want to go on LinkedIn… see if I actually know any of the “people I might know”. I want to plan my next vacation somewhere. Pretty much I want to do anything but answer those e-mails that keep coming in.

So I doodle. I read up on the importance of social media. At least it looks like I’m working. But of course, the printer in our office is located right by my desk so the nosy people I work with keep walking past me and always feel the need to look at my screen. Yes, I’m reading Penelope Trunk, get over it.

This is what my night usually looks like…

Okay, I’m bored. Let me log into my work e-mail. Man, I feel like working. Gossip Girl is on commercial…let me answer some of these. An hour later, my inbox is cleared. So at the end of the day, I did work. I just didn’t do it all at my desk.

Who was the genius that decided we need to work 8-hour days?

Apparently, he had no friends. Fortunately, it seems that with Gen Y in the workforce, this may change. As younger employees enter the workforce, they are finding themselves annoyed at having to work these standard hours. And employers are beginning to understand that they need to find ways to meet the demands for flexible working hours favored by these Gen Y-ers. Employers need to begin to focus on the quality of the tasks completed as opposed to the number of hours worked. They need to set goals for their employees and base their performance on whether or not those goals are reached. If an employee can complete a task in 3 hours and produce high quality work, isn’t that better than an employee who can complete that same task in 6 hours?

Are we in fact promoting inefficiency by requiring that all employees work a standard set of hours every week? Gen Y-ers want the freedom to set their hours. If they wake up late one day, they want to know that it’ll be okay to report to work at 10am, take lunch at noon, and finish their work throughout the day.

In her article, Erica Dhawan states, “Gen Y-ers don’t mind putting in long hours so long as we can choose those hours, particularly after a typical 9-5 workday”, which goes back to my argument that us Gen Y-ers are not lazy. It will be interesting to see how employers incorporate this need for flexibility amongst new workers, while still ensuring that the goals of the organizations are met.

Do you think allowing flexible work hours will increase employee efficiency, or do you think that there is a need for structured hours in the work place?

When in the day are you typically most productive?


For this post, YouTern thanks Gen Y Girl!

About the Author: Kayla Cruz graduated college at the age of 20 with a degree in Health Services Administration. She is currently working as a Regulatory Coordinator in Clinical Research while pursuing a Master’s Degree in Public Administration specializing in Human Resources. She has found she’s most passionate about helping young professionals navigate through their first few years as GenYers in the workforce. Follow Kayla on Twitter!



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