Outcomes Matter, Hours Don’t: Why You Shouldn’t Work More Than 9 Hours a Day as a Project Manager

If you’re a project manager, chances are you’ve been told that you need to put in long hours to be successful. After all, isn’t that what it takes to get the job done right? Well, not necessarily. In fact, working more than 9 hours a day can actually be counterproductive. Here’s why.

Working Hours and Outcomes among PMs

In a recent blog post, Charles commented on the importance of working 6-9 hours a day as a project manager. He said, “I believe that as a project manager, if we work more than 9 hours a day, we are not being efficient.” Gonzalo Sáenz, another project manager, chimed in to agree, saying that he works up to 12 hour days but tries to avoid it. Nikunj Kothari suggested selling t-shirts that say “Outcomes Matter, Hours Don’t” to spread awareness about this issue. Imran Sayed advised people to focus on the most important things during their working hours and take breaks after 6-8 weeks as career is a marathon. All of these comments suggest that working long hours is not necessary for project managers and can even be detrimental.

Further Considerations for Working Hours and Outcomes in Project Management

There are many examples of successful projects that were completed with fewer hours worked compared to those projects taking longer to complete. In addition, there are benefits of taking breaks such as improved productivity, creativity, and motivation in work environments. Furthermore, it is important to prioritize tasks so that the most important things are done first and efficiently. Finally, success should be measured within project management by incorporating KPIs, customer feedback, profitability metrics etc.


To sum it up, working more than 9 hours a day as a project manager is unnecessary and can even be counterproductive. What matters more than the number of hours you work is the outcome of your work. By focusing on the most important tasks and taking breaks when needed, you can be more productive and efficient in your role as a project manager.

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