What is the difference between these two constructions:

a) I've done five days' worth of work.
b) I've done five days' work.

Example (a): I've done five days' worth of work in only two days!
Example (b): Great! Thanks to you, my five days' work goes down the drain!

Do they mean the following:

a) I have done as much work as I normally do within five days' time.
b) The amount of work that I have done within five days.

  • 1
    There is a nuance difference, but not without a context of time in the example a). You can do five days' worth of work in three days if you're working extra hard or extra long hours.
    – kaipmdh
    Commented Jul 24, 2020 at 11:02
  • kaipmdh, I edited my question and added more context. Commented Jul 24, 2020 at 11:34
  • 1
    Related but not a duplicate: {days / days'} worth of stuff?, the meaning of “*'s worth of”
    – ColleenV
    Commented Jul 24, 2020 at 13:49

1 Answer 1


I would understand the two expressions just as you said. Live examples:

How to Complete a Week’s Worth of Work in One Day source

A week's worth of work clearly means "the amount of work that would normally take a week"

Some have advocated for four days of work, followed by 10 days of lockdown. source

This clearly refers to an actual length of time.

However these division aren't rigid:

Shortening the work week could mean axing important tasks as five days of work are crammed into four. source

So you must always read in context

  • Thank you, James! Commented Jul 31, 2020 at 9:48

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