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Employees are spending more than a day of their work week bored, according to a survey conducted by staffing firm OfficeTeam. Speaking to more than 380 US workers and over 300 senior managers at US companies with 20 or more employees, professionals admit they are bored on average 10.5 hours per week.
Taken all together, that is nearly 68 days a year, far above estimations by senior management, who although acknowledged tedium at the office, thought their staff were bored about six hours a week.
Moreover, 40% or two in five employees admitted they would likely quit their job if they felt bored at work. But how do most people fill in their time when there is a lull in productivity? As you might expect, surfing the internet, browsing social media and chatting with co-workers to be the most common.
But workers cited these as the most creative ways they pass the time:
• Have rubber band battles with co-workers.
• Make grocery lists and cut coupons.
• Learn another language.
• Do crossword puzzles.
• Play ping-pong.
• Make videos.
• Pay bills.
• Watch TV or movies online.
• Work on the book I’m writing.
• Play online games.
• Act like I’m interested in the work and meetings.
• Clean my desk.
• Ask for more work.
• Look for other jobs
“Let’s face it, the workday isn’t always filled with excitement. Managers can regularly check in with staff to ensure they’re engaged, but the onus is also on employees,” said Brandi Britton, a district president for OfficeTeam.
“When boredom strikes or there’s a lull in activity, individuals should proactively ask to help with projects that challenge and interest them.”
The survey also revealed some other interesting results: male workers and those aged 18 to 34 are bored the most per week (12 hours and 14 hours, respectively). Men (46 %) and employees aged 18 to 34 (52%) are also the most likely to leave their current position if bored.
More than one-quarter of senior managers (28%) think the main reason boredom strikes is because employees don’t feel challenged by assignments.
While 45% of professionals are equally bored throughout the year, another 28% said work was most tedious during the winter. In general, nearly four in 10 senior managers (39%) believe staff have too much work to do in their jobs.
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