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4-day Workweek | How to Balance Your Productivity and Life?

All work and no play make a man dull and in mental pain. We have always been taught to work hard and productively to the point where we barely have time for ourselves. However, the approach is now changing, as it should.

Researchers and companies have begun to take a counterintuitive approach to workplace productivity, reducing the number of days that employees work. The 4-day work week has improved productivity, employee health, and satisfaction at the managerial and lower levels. Let us learn more about it.

The 4-day Workweek

The 4-day workweek is a concept of reducing the amount of time per week that employees spend in the office by 20%. So, the typical 5-day routine would be reduced to 4 days a week and from 40 to 32 hours per week.

The intensity of the work that these employees perform does not increase. It is the typical work assigned with just one less workday per week.

The Concept

The typical 21st-century worker works 8.5 hours a day for 5 days a week. This adds up to over 2000 hours of work every year. It is common knowledge that workers are frequently burnt out, suffer from physical and mental health issues, and are generally unhappy. All these factors lead to reduced productivity.

Hypothetically, in that case, if the number of time employees spent working every week was reduced, these issues would be addressed. Productivity should increase long-term if the workers are in a better state to work.

The Benefits

Unsurprisingly, the researchers’ assumptions were correct. Companies in the UK, Iceland, Japan, New Zealand, and Belgium that participated in the experiment saw radical increases in productivity.

For example, the UK’s Atom Bank saw a 92% increase in productivity over 9 months with the same pay and workload.

Moreover, the company saw a 500% increase in applications for job vacancies, and these applications were more likely to be from better candidates attracted to the more favorable working conditions.

The Outcome

As a result of these experiments, over 95% of workers and managers wished to continue using the 4-day model for increased productivity and employee health and well-being. Almost all the organizations involved decided to shift exclusively to this model.

At the pace with which this model is gaining popularity, it will likely spread from European countries to the remainder of the West and eventually the whole world. It would be only right since it presents a win-win situation for both employers and employees.

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