People are often being paid by the hour. Or at least, that is how they perceive it once their contract names the number of hours they should work per day or week.
In other situations, people are being paid for doing the job. Take for example teachers in Germany, they will find themselves with a specific number of hours in the classroom but these hours only describe the work that is visible to others.
Both options have their own challenges.
In the first situation, people may come to fill up the available time with work. Cyril Northcote Parkinson famously described this with Parkinson’s law.
It’s a situation where the quantity of work is the primary decision factor.
In the second situation, people find themselves more often asking themselves when it is that their task is complete.
In this case, the principal question will be linked to the quality of the work.
Naturally, there is no clear distinction between both leading to overlaps between both approaches.
The question this leads to is how people enable themselves to see when they have done a work that is good enough, or splendid. It also invites people to ask themselves what they consider work and what they don’t consider work.
Someone who isn’t sure the work they delivered is the one expected will always struggle to decide that they have done enough.
Someone who isn’t sure about his qualification will often opt into learning a bit more here and there but avoid considering it work.
Answering these questions starts with finding one’s own answers to what is being expected of them and what qualification is needed for the job ahead.
A point of attention here is, that finding one’s own answers doesn’t mean to find them alone. It only means that there is benefit in owning the answer.