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18/11/2015

Lucy Kellaway asks whatever happened to the 9 to 5? Talking to business leaders and office workers, she finds out how Britain ended up with a long hours office culture. 1/3.

Lucy Kellaway looks at the UK's long hours office culture and asks what happened to the 9 to 5?

In 1930 John Maynard Keynes predicted that, by 2030, we'd all be working a 15 hour week. And yet, almost half of us in the UK put in over a 40 hour week and most of those who work over 48 hours say they're unhappy.

In part one of a new series on modern work culture, Lucy Kellaway, management columnist for the Financial Times, discovers the origins of the eight hour working day.

She finds out what people are actually up to when they're in the office at all hours and argues much of the typical working day is taken up with time-wasting. For Lucy, our self image has become so intertwined with our job that we bolster it by putting the hours in - even if in doing so we're less happy and productive.

Speaking to business leaders, management researchers, and office workers, Lucy asks whether it's time to re-define our notion of 'hard work', and explores the idea that working less could actually be better for everyone.

Written and presented by Lucy Kellaway

Producer: Gemma Newby
Executive Producer: Russell Finch
A Somethin' Else production for BBC Radio 4.

Available now

28 minutes

Last on

Wed 6 Apr 2016 15:30

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