Employers should be offering 4 day workweeks. I know this might seem radical to some, but I’ll try and prove to you in this post that not only is this possible, but you might achieve better results as a company if you give employees an extra day off.
There are a few forward-thinking companies that are already starting to pick up on this trend, and they will end up having first-mover advantage.
One of the companies I’ll talk about today is already taking employees away from Facebook and Google just because of their relaxed work environment.
I can tell you personally, that it bothers me that we still all go to offices for a large part of our day.
With all the advancements in technology, it seems to me like we haven’t fully caught on yet.
Realistically, I could do all of my work from home. And even if you try and argue about the social aspect, we could always chat on Skype or Sqwiggle if we wanted to.
As radical as a 4 day workweek seems, think about Tim Ferris’s best-selling book The 4 Hour Workweek.
Imagine only working half a day out of the whole week. This book really breaks down how he actually does it, but I won’t even go that far.
For this post, I’ll just argue for taking one day off.
The Case Against The 4 Day Workweek
Before I really get started, I think it might be fair to talk about why companies might be against a 4 day workweek.
There are a few reasons that I can think of, but it’s important that I say some businesses might think that they can’t operate this way because of the line of work they’re in.
For example, if you’re in a call center or shipping warehouse, you can’t shut the place down for a day.
You could easily create shifts though, and have some people take Monday off, and some people take Friday off, allowing everyone to have a 4 day workweek.
This might lead to another problem I see, which is the complexity it adds in tracking and managing schedules. It’s possible the companies don’t see the added value in offering that. To me, it’s totally worth it.
Another problem I could see companies having, and this is probably the biggest one, is they can’t make the link between giving their employees downtime, and them being more productive.
This frustrates me so much.
When will companies wake up, and realize that people aren’t machines?
You need to have downtime to be more productive.
How Downtime Affects Your Productivity
Just in case you think I’m making this stuff up, let me link you to 2 scientific studies that show how taking breaks makes you more productive.
Companies can’t seem to understand that no one can maintain a high level of productivity all the time.
This leads to employee burnout.
When you’re tired and overworked, you end up making so many more mistakes, and you go at a much slower pace.
As an employer, you actually end up getting more bang for your buck if you let employees take time off.
Companies Implementing 4 Day Workweeks
There are many companies that have already implemented this type of work schedule, and it’s been going amazing for them. Let’s look at a few together.
1. Treehouse – Seriously, read this article where he explains the incredible results they’ve achieved. I also got a chance to interview Ryan Carson, their CEO to find out how they make that work.
2. Basecamp – Jason Fried, who happens to be a personal hero of mine, wrote an article in the New York Times about how him and his team are more productive because of the shortened workweek.
3. Slingshot SEO – The founder of the company wrote a great post in Inc Magazine about why working a 4 day workweek is good for him and his team.
Bonus: Workflex Guide
If you’re thinking at all about potentially implementing some sort of flexible work schedule, I’d definitely recommend checking out this guide by the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM) called: “Workflex: The Essential Guide to Effective and Flexible Workplaces”
Do You Think A 4 Day Workweek Makes Any Sense?
I personally think it leads to so much more productivity, since you have enough time to rest, and take care of errands that you need to attend do. What do you think? Let me know your thoughts on twitter @JacobShriar or @Officevibe.