A workaholic lives on fear. It’s fear that drives him to show up all the time. The best defense, apparently, is a good attendance record.
A new class of jobs (and workers) is creating a different sort of worker, though. This is the person who works out of passion and curiosity, not fear.
The passionate worker doesn’t show up because she’s afraid of getting in trouble, she shows up because it’s a hobby that pays.
The passionate worker is busy blogging on vacation… because posting that thought and seeing the feedback it generates is actually more fun than sitting on the beach for another hour. The passionate worker tweaks a site design after dinner because, hey, it’s a lot more fun than watching TV.
It was hard to imagine someone being passionate about mining coal or scrubbing dishes. But the new face of work, at least for some people, opens up the possibility that work is the thing (much of the time) that you’d most like to do. Designing jobs like that is obviously smart. Finding one is brilliant.