Very interesting article — great information. I noticed a few things missing that I have witnessed in my 20-year career that may be of interest — although at this point, this is based on sheer experience, not a study or facts. Men that I have worked with in the high-tech industry work longer hours for many reasons.
First, many times, they count on others to do their hands-on work for them and therefore waste valuable time. While a "do-it-yourself" model can only go so far, it gives a deeper understanding and generally shorter turnaround.
Secondly, they tend to travel when they really don't need to because of their egos (I have seen this a million times). "Oh, I need to be in Brussels for a meeting." They think that is cool. By the way, I love business travel because, quite frankly, when you are out of the office, your time is used the way you want versus getting derailed by the crisis of the hour.
Third, men keep longer hours on average (although I have to say I am keeping 10-12 hour days with the best of them) because they are very inefficient. They spend too much time "deliberating" and "debating" to be right instead of "acting" to get results.
Finally, most men I know don't work longer, they "stay at work" longer and want to be the first and last car in the parking lot — which to me is a bigger question regarding their lack of well-roundedness.
My theory has always been that what you do outside of the office speaks highly about your genuine abilities and character — as well as emotional intelligence — a great competitive weapon for employers.
Stephanie S. Anderson
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A version of this article appeared in the February 2004 issue of Fast Company magazine.