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aAdvocates of the four-day workweek stirred interest Monday by releasing the results of a pilot study that found — no surprise here — that people like to work a short week, while being paid the same despite fewer hours.
Of the 61 UK-based organizations employing nearly 3,000 workers who have adopted a four-day work schedule without cutting pay, only three have decided to stop the arrangement and two have extended the trial, which was led by Boston College, Cambridge University and Britain’s Cambridge University. – An independent research institution. The rest plan to continue, and the results show that they saw an increase in revenue and significant decreases in employee turnover while employees felt a decrease in burnout, stress, and work-life balance problems. eighteen companies, Forbes Emily Washburn stated that she would make the change permanent.
The latest release is the largest study to date, but the results shouldn’t come as a surprise. In November, a study reported the preliminary results of a smaller pilot study of employers based in the United States, Ireland and Australia. And it had similar results: Companies in the research reported that revenue rose 8% over the study period, burnout scores fell for two-thirds of employees and the amount of sick or personal leave fell by about two hours per month.
That study followed the release of the mid-term report of the UK pilot program in September, which also found that most participants had success with the programme. And, as Washburn notes, there have been studies in Iceland (where 86% of employees work fewer hours for the same pay after multiple studies showed its benefits) and in Japan (where Microsoft reported a 40% increase in productivity after giving employees five consecutive Fridays in 2019). ). In short: people like to work less for the same pay.
While employees continue to struggle with balancing the demands of work-life and burnout from the workloads of recent years, it’s a solution that helps workers—particularly those with caregiving responsibilities—to carve out time of the week for the rest of their personal needs and responsibilities when I know they’re not around the clock. the hour. (I’ve worked out four days a week before, and that’s hard to beat, especially with school-age kids.)
However, despite the researchers’ repeated findings, it seems unlikely that the current moment will lead to widespread adoption. Some would argue, with credibility, that increased revenue and lower turnover could have occurred despite a shorter workweek (and in a tougher job market, lower turnover is expected for everyone). Others will understandably note that such an arrangement is difficult to implement in places that require factory jobs, customer-facing workers or front-line workers who need to maintain safety, operations, or logistics. Since most of these organizations are smaller employers, it is unclear how successful their adoption and success will be in a large global multinational corporation. (Unilever called the early testing “encouraging,” but is only piloting it in small pockets of its business.)
Then there is the tougher job market. Right now, many employers are trying to get people back in the office so they can keep them in mind — not give them more flexibility. With mass layoffs aplenty, many employers have no need to accommodate workers’ demands, even if the end result may be more productivity and stability, not less. You may not take a long view, but it’s also realistic.
For those who were familiar with the four-day week experiment, the new research might nudge you in that direction—especially if you’re a startup. If you work five days and want to work less, all this research may be your best argument yet. Whatever your work days, we hope you have a great week.
How Thousands of Nurses Got Licensed With Fake Degrees
In January, the Department of Justice disclosed criminal conspiracy and wire fraud charges against 25 people in connection with the $114 million sale of 7,600 fraudulent degrees from three now-defunct South Florida nursing schools, Forbes Staff reporting by Emma Whitford and Janet Novak. The certificates enabled untrained individuals to sit for the National Nursing Council examinations and no fewer than 2,800 of them passed. The last of them for ForbesWhitford and Novak explore how the nursing diploma scandal and a new science book highlight a fast-growing fraud problem in education: bogus degree factories.
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on our agenda
News from the world of work
The gray effect of layoffs: Amid a white-collar recession with thousands of job cuts, some have raised concerns that older workers may be targeted. Forbes Contributor Jack Kelly reflects on allegations regarding older workers.
More Women of Color Represented in Top Movies: An annual study released Thursday from the Annenberg Inclusion Initiative at the University of Southern California shows that the number of top-grossing films starring women and women of color increased slightly last year. But films starring people of color are down somewhat from the previous year, according to reports ForbesMarisa Dellato.
Tighten Meta Performance Review: after Wall Street Journal reported that Meta has given thousands of tech workers substandard performance ratings, ForbesKelly examines how performance reviews can pave the way for more job cuts.
No new Twitter CEO yet: Twitter CEO Elon Musk said last week that he expects to have a new leader in place by the end of 2023, nearly two months after Twitter users voted for him to step down. He told the World Government Summit in Dubai through a video call that he first wanted to “stabilize the organization” and ensure its financial health, according to reports. ForbesCeladitya Ray.
Weakness of resignation: After Scottish Prime Minister Nicola Sturgeon followed New Zealand’s Jacinda Ardern in stepping down, Forbes Contributor Josie Cox spoke with management experts about the leadership lessons in the vulnerabilities these women display.
Books, links, and other readings from around the web about work, careers, and leadership
Inside look at Atlantic On how Elon Musk “killed” Twitter culture.
The nurses are exhausted. the The New York Times He asks if hospitals can change their cultures fast enough?
Oxford University professor Bent Flaifberg and journalist Dan Gardner have been released How Big Things Get Done: The Surprising Factors That Determine Every Project’s Destiny. Dubbed “the world’s leading megaproject expert,” Flybgjerg identifies the decision-making errors that derail large projects in a book called Nobel Prize winner Daniel Kahneman’s “Timely, Instructive, and Engaging.”