The United States should seriously consider moving to a four-day work week to improve employee health and provide more opportunities for those with different schedules or needs.
So says Andrew Yang, entrepreneur, political commentator at CNN and former presidential candidate.
“Three-day weekends are better than two-day weekends. We need to look seriously at four-day work weeks. Studies show that we are just as productive in that regard. That would create jobs for those on the sidelines and improve workers’ health,” Yang tweeted on Monday.
4-day workweek, 3-day weekend
The concept of the four-day working week is not new, but it is gaining ground during the corona crisis in which companies are forced to adapt to new circumstances, with staff working from home. Workers adjust rosters to take care of their families and some positions change completely.
Yang accompanied his tweet with a link to an article by The Washington Post about studies indicating that employees are more productive during a four-day work week and more likely to be satisfied with their work.
There are real world examples that support these studies. For example, a Japanese subsidiary of Microsoft experimented with the four-day work week, which increased productivity by 40 percent.
New Zealand entrepreneur Andrew Barnes, founder of the company Perpetual Garden, has also introduced the four-day workweek after discovering that it benefits both his employees and the company.
Yang isn’t just a proponent of the four-day workweek because of its higher productivity and longer weekends. According to him, it can also create jobs for people who are on the sidelines. In other words, it can provide employment for those who may not be able to take a regular five-day job.
A four-day work week can also smooth out inequality. For example, it could help women achieve a more equal position in the workplace, by shifting more care for the children, it can be more evenly distributed between men and women, according to The Washington Post.
- Employees of this marketing agency will all work 4 days instead of 5
- Microsoft tried a 4-day workweek in Japan… and saw productivity increase by 40%
- A 3-day weekend – that makes people happier and more productive, says an economist.