Time Management – The Art of Balance

Survey on the Use of Working Hours


Are You Using Your Working Hours Sensibly and Effectively at Work?

In today’s fast-paced and demanding work environment, effectively using working hours is crucial. How we utilize our time at work can significantly impact our productivity, satisfaction, and work-life balance.

Our survey of 70 participants on the use of working hours provides interesting insights. We primarily wanted to know:

How much time can you actually invest in your work each week?

It became clear that it’s not just about how many hours we work but how we use those hours.

Shockingly: 51% of participants can effectively use less than half of their working hours in a normal work week.

Provocatively put:

More than half of the participants spend full-time at the workplace but can actually work less than a part-time employee.

An excerpt from the results: 
Answers to the question: “How much time can you spend on your actual work during a typical week at work?”

Where is the most working time lost?


Efficiency is at the heart of optimal use of working hours. Instead of getting lost in endless task lists, successful employees set clear priorities and organize their work into effective time blocks. The common term in time management today is “timeboxing” – a topic I first covered in my 2008 seminars on self and time management…

By focusing on the most important tasks and avoiding distractions, productivity can be increased, and goals can be achieved more efficiently.


Timeboxing involves setting fixed time frames for a project or a process within the project, which should not be exceeded.



Additional Proposed Solutions from Survey Participants Include:

  • More employees
  • More effective meeting culture
  • Clear delegation of tasks

The art of utilizing working hours requires conscious reflection and adjustment of our habits.

It is our responsibility as employees, but also as leaders, to improve the use of working hours and create supportive conditions.

A culture of efficiency, as well as the appreciation of breaks (a topic I address in my burnout prevention course), and a strong stance against bureaucracy and pseudo-occupations, promotes a positive and productive work environment, allowing everyone to reach their full potential.

What the Survey Did Not Address

The survey aimed to provide a general mood and self-assessment of the employees.

For genuine root cause analysis, team leaders and their teams can consciously examine their meeting culture. Team leaders and managers should question their decision-making processes: Often frustrating waiting times occur because decisions are not made immediately, and employees have to start a task multiple times to eventually complete it.

Feel free to download the PDF of the survey: here