There is plenty of evidence showing people who work mad hours are more prone to get ill, drink heavily and make rubbish decisions. Even if you work gladly on a project you love, which may be the case for Mr Cummings’ crew, you are more likely to muck up when tired. A study of workers at a global consultancy firm a few years ago found their bosses could not tell the difference between those who toiled for 80 hours a week and those who simply pretended to. Otherwise he sounds like one of those irksome bosses who imposes manic work habits on his underlings because he prefers to work like that himself. I doubt Mr Cummings’ work days look like those of Charles Darwin, Charles Dickens and other great creative minds. Not that long ago, a friend sent me an article by Alex Soojung-Kim Pang, a Silicon Valley consultant who spent a lot of time investigating the working lives of influential thinkers for a book he wrote called Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less. Brief periods of intense work and lots of rest sound far better.
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