Are you overworking?

By Angela Cox

It seems over-working is a definite thing for professionals and executive leaders.

And according to the poll I ran last week on LinkedIn in January, 70% of particpants reported they work more than 41 hours per week.

More than 200 people took part in the survey which asked employed people how many hours per week they worked on average over the last three months.

The results are shocking!

  • 3% worked more than 71 hours per week.
  • 23% worked between 56 & 70 hours.
  • 44% worked between 41 & 55 hours.
  • And just 30% worked 40 hours and under.

The poll was inspired off the back of Mental Health UK’s Burnout Report which shows that nine out of ten adults experienced high or extreme levels of stress last year, a figure that cuts across almost all generations, and 20% of workers needed to take time off work due to poor mental health caused by pressure or stress.

I coach senior leaders and execs for a living, and know only too well the pressures they are under.

Hybrid working appears to adding to the problem with blurred lines between work and home.

And whilst the overworking issue can undoubtedly be part of organisational culture with many professionals reporting ‘it goes with the territory,’ I feel there are some other challenges at play too.

The pretender masks..

When I work with boards and leadership teams it becomes more obvious..

Some people overwork..

And some don’t.

On the same team.

In the same organisation.

My theory is it’s linked to individual pretender styles, and the two pretenders prone to overworking are…


Whether it’s organisational culture or deep psychology, overworking leads to burnout and the body keeps the score folks!


If you have a copy of my first book, Enough, flick to page 181 and complete the capacity exercise to map out how you spend your time.

Take our pretender test to figure out how this might be contributing to your overwork. I will pop the link in the comments.

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