The concept of four day workweeks has become increasingly popular as flexible work arrangements become a mainstay of the workforce.
However, before companies make the shift to four day weeks instead of five, there are several factors to consider to ensure that this transition is as seamless as possible.
For starters, it’s important to create boundaries about when colleagues and leaders should be communicating about work-related issues. Unless it’s an emergency, leaders should avoid sending emails on off days to show they respect this new schedule and people’s time away from work.
Additionally, leaders should make it clear what they expect from new schedules. For instance, does a shorter work week mean that employees will work 32 hours per week? Or will they continue working 40 hours across the four days?
Another important factor to take into consideration is that just because this work model is popular, does not mean it is a one-size-fits-all solution. While ten-hour work days may be doable for some, those who have children or are caretakers may have harder adopting this schedule.
“The four-day workweek requires building a culture of trust and accountability,” said David Swanagon, Head of People Analytics, North America at Ericsson. “To do this, cultivate a positive relationship between employees and their supervisors. Then, connect talent to the organization’s key influencers and internal communities. At the same time, foster a learning culture that builds critical skills. Lastly, create a data-fluent and digitally-enabled workspace.”