It isn’t the first time the idea of free Fridays has been around. Gone are the days of offices that only consist of grey walls and instant coffee. The competition is rising, as is the psychology behind keeping good employees happy enough to stay at their jobs. Some offices even go as far as offering team games, gym classes, and ping pong.
If one goes as far as questioning the work-pleasure balance, psychologically the Monday to Friday nine-to-five is out of balance at best. According to the article “We Gave Our Employees Fridays Off Paid and Now We Have an Amazing Team,” if we had just one more day to do the things we enjoy doing, the benefits would be outstanding
So, what exactly are the benefits of having Fridays off work? And what did this company consider when making the decision for their employees? Better yet, what happened as a result of giving the employees a three-day weekend?
So What Did The Company Do?
These days, it seems as if balancing work and life outside work is more difficult than it has ever been. Employees expect more as companies deliver more, and there is little evidence to support the idea that ping pong tables motivate employees and make for better business. However, an extra day just might.
The company gave their employees every other Friday off, paid, naming it the “18-Day Work Month” with the understanding that it was a truly productive way to motivate their employees. The psychology behind the idea is that people perform at their peak when they aren’t confined to the drudgery of set work hours every single week, day in, day out. Instead, they use the four days they are at work more productively, they focus more intently, and then they spend their three-day weekend having a true break and coming back fresh and focused on Monday morning. The employees are more driven because they are feel like they are being taken care of, that as human beings, they matter. This, of course, leads to happier employees.
How Is This Beneficial?
The obvious fear for companies when they look at this front on is that there are less work hours being applied to the job at hand. However, when approached strategically, they were smart enough to understand that figures may better add up with a more humanist approach. In other words, understanding that by taking care of good staff, your staff will in turn take care of you.
Seems simple, right? When you look at the bigger picture, you can see that this system works. For example, if you are searching for employees who are professional, productive, and get things right the first time around, you’ll be searching for people who are intermediate or a ways into their careers. These people are usually more settled and a little further along in their lives, as opposed to the general beginner. They will value their free time with their life outside of work. They will be highly attracted to the four-day week and it will encourage them to shoot for the stars and do their very best for this kind of role. This, in turn, will cut your costs on recruitment and training.
It Makes Sense!
If we are wanting to employ the best, we need to treat them like the best and offer things beyond what they might expect. By promoting a unique balance on a very human level, we understand people and respect them as they are — incredible business people who are great at their jobs, but also family people, or people who have built lives outside of the workplace. Acknowledging this benefits everybody. The employees will feel in control and happy. Perhaps this is something for everyone to think about!
Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com