Staff who enjoy time sovereignty – control over the number of hours they
work – are happier than those who work to set hours, according to an Industrial
It claims employees are no longer content with set work-life balance
practices, they want to be able to decide the length of work days as well.
A feeling of control reduces stress and raises work motivation, according to
the report. However, less than half of the 2,032 staff questioned have control
over their hours.
The study, conducted by the London School of Economics and Policy Studies
Institute, admits that some jobs lend themselves more to time sovereignty than
others, but points to a number of measures that could be applied to a wide
range of jobs.
These include a clear reward scheme to promote good performance rather than
time spent in the office, providing staff with mobile technology to encourage
flexible working, and devolving time management to workers.
Judith Doyle, co-author of the report, said, "Control over workers’
time decreases their motivation."