Some managers use corporate spy-ware to nitpick their employees over trivial amounts of break time — time that has actually been proven to improve productivity. Just as bad, others put up draconian firewalls which kill productivity and breed dissatisfaction. Isn’t it time that these managers were held to the same standard of accountability for the ways they spend their time?
One of the biggest problems is that upper management often doesn’t know what is really going on down in the trenches. It’s hard to have any idea if managers are actually doing anything, since often, they don’t directly produce much more than the odd slide show or some random memos. The sleaziest of these leeches take credit for all the success and blame their subordinates for any failures, regardless of the real contributions.
Trust and accountability are two way streets. Employees should be able to use tools like RescueTime to defend skipping out early on Friday, after putting in extra time to meet deadlines during the week. Managers should be able to show their team the sort of work ethic that is expected, not with words, but by their own actions.