What is one reason why companies should have a 4 day work week?
To help you best appreciate the benefits of a 4-day work week, we asked CEOs, founders, and business leaders this question for their best insights. From allowing more time to recharge to creating a better work-life balance for working parents, there are several reasons for having a 4-day work week that is based on the positive experiences of companies that are practicing it.
Here are 11 reasons these leaders opt for a 4-day work week in their companies:
- Allows More Time to Recharge
- Improves Mental Health of Employees
- 4 Days Are Enough for Productive Work
- Allows Time for Needed Training and Networking
- Improves Productivity
- Helps Reduce Cost
- Attracts Talent
- Creates a Better Work Environment
- Helps Increase the Output for Creative Jobs
- Enables a Shift to a Results-Oriented Approach to Work
- Creates a Better Work-Life Balance for Working Parents
Allows More Time to Recharge
The 4 day work week is a great way to motivate employees while maintaining or even increasing productivity. Since employees are working fewer days, they’re able to take ample time to rest and recharge. This can help prevent burnout and increase work quality, especially if employees are able to utilize their time off to refresh. I’ve used a 4 day work week at two of my companies, and I’ve seen it work extremely well. At first it was difficult to notice any change in productivity, but the increased quality of meetings, interactions, and ideas steadily became clear. Looking back, it’s kind of obvious that only by allowing people ample time to heal and recharge can we expect them to produce their best work.
Matthew Walker, the prominent sleep scientist, calls being awake a kind of low-level brain damage that sleep can heal. Being at work similarly exerts a kind of damage on people, and it is only having time to ourselves that can enable us to recover.
Improves Mental Health of Employees
5 or 6-days work weeks tend to be highly exhausting for employees. That’s usually because they end up not having time for themselves, and the constant sense of work responsibilities negatively affects their mental health. Your brain needs some breathing space to work better and you need time for aspects that help you unwind. We were aware of this maxim and switched to a 4 day work week earlier this year. In response to this, we’ve noticed a huge improvement in employee satisfaction and they work with more enthusiasm. Plus, many employees have shared experiencing improved mental health just because they are able to devote more time to themselves.
4 Days Are Enough for Productive Work
The modern corporate world is filled with pseudo work. Work that people generate for themselves and others because they have nothing truly productive to do at their job. That’s how workers have ended up becoming busy and stressed but accomplishing nothing! If you tell people they only have four days to perform their tasks, they’ll get them done in four days, with the added benefit of being well-rested when they come in the next week.
Since the start of the year, I’ve implemented a four-day work week at my company, and people are as productive as ever, if not more, they’re happier and more well-rested.
Allows Time for Needed Training and Networking
As an SEO Consultant, my team and I have to stay current in best practices, updates, and cutting-edge ideas. Working a four-day week takes the stress out of attending conferences, giving us the time to network with our peers and leading SEOs. Investing in myself is crucial to my continued success. Typically, I allocate one day a week to upskilling and training. Without continuous training and knowledge sharing through networking, it would be impossible to deliver the results my clients expect. Essentially, a four-day week has enabled my team and I to invest in ourselves and ultimately make my consultancy a success.
One of the reasons why we recommend 4 day work weeks is that it gives employees a chance to recharge during the weekend, and return to the office with more energy to focus on work without the continuous exhaustion piling up. Having a 2-day weekend used to make it impossible for anyone to rest as one day went to errands and chores and the other day went to social activities, but when was a person supposed to actually get the rest they need? With a 4 day work week, that extra day goes to self care and allows a person to actually prioritize rest without letting go of social obligations or responsibilities.
Helps Reduce Cost
A four-day week reduces the costs of any company. Of course, by keeping your office closed for an extra day of the week, you can save a lot of expenses, like electricity and other equipment costs. And since many companies provide tea, and lunch during breaks, you can save on these costs by creating a 4-day work week. Further, doing so saves your employees the fare they spend commuting to the company. Our company has a four-day work week, which has reduced many of our factory costs, which we used to spend on opening an extra office day a week.
We’ve been looking for an angle which would allow us to expand our talent pool without increasing salaries. As a SMB, upping salaries right now is not an option placing top tier talent out of our reach. Implementing a 4 day work week has somewhat leveled the playing field. As a business, we are more attractive and able to compete with much larger operations. Many of our new hires are using their long weekend to build their own businesses, freelance, or retrain. Overall, we are a happier, healthier, and more productive team.
Creates a Better Work Environment
When we work for 4 days a week, the entire atmosphere just changes. As employees are well-rested and have had the chance to get the rest they need both mentally and physically, the work environment, mood and tolerance is completely altered. As the positivity sets in, more tolerance amongst employees improves communication and collaboration, the support and willingness to help is increased and you can feel the good mood filling up the office improving productivity, getting better results and making the good mood feel contagious. A 4 day work week was the best decision we ever made!
Helps Increase the Output for Creative Jobs
I don’t support the four-day workweek for fast-paced, highly-demanding jobs. However, for any job requiring creativity and problem-solving skills, the ability to separate for three days a week dramatically improves one’s ability to operate at their best potential.
Based on personal experience, working for most of the week shifts my mentality to one focused on getting the job done. However, when I carved out 3 days to myself to work on self-improvement and being outdoors, my creativity at finishing tasks improved dramatically, slowing down for longer periods of time really improves one’s ability to handle the same set of tasks differently, generating a higher quality outcome.
Enables a Shift to a Results-Oriented Approach to Work
Who decided that every role in your organization should be divided into 40 hour chunks anyway? The typical work week is a legacy of the industrial revolution, enshrined in employment law, and rarely questioned – which is why experiments like the 4-day work week give organizations and teams a chance to rethink what work is, what they are paying for, and whether they’re measuring the right things in the first place.
Once you shift to a results-oriented perspective, people show more creativity and commitment to getting things done, rather than putting the hours in, and can be rewarded with greater flexibility about when, where, and over what timeframe, they get those things done.
Creates a Better Work-Life Balance for Working Parents
For most working parents, they barely get to see their children during the week as by the time they get back home and finish work, it’s almost time for bed. However, having a 4-day work week allows working parents to spend almost half of the week with their children and have a logical work/life balance. This fulfillment and satisfaction that they get from spending more time with their family and getting to make more memories with their kids helps them improve their productivity at work and give it 100% as they don’t feel they’re missing out anymore.
If you’re curious about how a tech company’s culture might differ from other industries, and what that might mean for you, here are the 8 kinds of company culture you’ll find in tech.
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