Only work 4 days a week

Ever heard of Andrew Barnes from New Zealand? Back in 2018, he turned heads by announcing to his team that they’d get the same pay but only had to clock in for four days a week. Shocking, right?

Bonjour, in this video, I dive into this experiment and challenge the way we typically think about productivity. 

So, Andrew Barnes, cruising at 30,000 feet, stumbles upon an interesting reserach: UK workers are engaged in their jobs for about three hours a day.

This sparks an idea. Barnes returns to the office, preps for a month, and kicks off a radical experiment. Same pay, four days a week, but the catch is you’ve got to get the job done in that time. To keep it legit, he brings in academic researchers to track productivity, engagement, and the human side of things. 

What happened next? Well, it’s fascinating. People started spotting inefficiencies that had been overlooked for years. Productivity shot up, and the team not only did more but did it better. Engagements soared by 30 to 40%, and stress levels dropped by 15%! 

Now, for you leaders out there, here are some nuggets to chew on: 

1. Mind Shift: Productivity isn’t a numbers game. It’s not about doing more tasks, answering more emails, or clocking more meeting hours. It’s about doing the right things—the impactful things. Shift your focus from quantity to quality. 

2. Engage Your Team: Your team is a goldmine of untapped creativity. Involve them in discussions about productivity. By engaging their brains, you’ll uncover brilliant solutions that might have been hiding in plain sight. 

3. Boundaries Matter: As leaders, set clear boundaries. Define when work should happen—let’s say, between 8:30 AM and 5:30 PM. Exceptions? Sure, but they should be rarities, not the norm. Also, think about when you’re sending emails. Late nights and weekends? Consider the example you’re setting. 

So, my question for you is this: How long do you genuinely think you’re productive each day? And what about your team? Can you guide them—and yourself—to achieve more with less? 

This is this week’s Work Smarter: Live Better tip.  

Wishing you a lovely and super productive day! 

A bientôt

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