Summer Fridays, the new big thing!

Is your employer ready to offer you a 3 days weekend this summer?

Come on, it’s Thursday, you are leaving the office and the only thing you are thinking about is that precise moment where you are gonna leave your desk tomorrow at the same time (almost) to enjoy these 2 days off you are going to dedicate to your best summer buddies “BBQ” and “Rosé”.


Be honest, even if you like to hustle like Gary , even if you have the job you have ever dreamt about (which is my case) you probably hate to work on Friday and most of the time, you are not gonna be super productive and/or set any big business meetings . Let’s face it, Fridays suck when it comes to summer!

And here comes the new big thing, the Summer Fridays. Our friends in the US at big corporations understood that their employees will be more than super happy to get their Summer Fridays off. They understood that people will be so grateful if they have the chance to light up the BBQ on Thursday. They understood as well that their employees will not be dedicated to their work on Friday when the sun is shining outside anyway. It seems to be a pretty good deal, nope ? Let see.

Are Summer Fridays a real present?

Do companies offer their employees to leave early on Fridays or even a free day off because they want to establish a work balance that match their employees needs, because they really have in their DNA their employees well -being ? Or do they quietly remind their employees that they are being nice to them, so they better have to “play the game”, to show some gratefulness ?

Here is my guess :

There are pioneers, game changers and the other ones.

The emergence of startups, unicorns and the GAFA put us in another dimension. From a day to another, we have discovered that it was possible to work a lot, achieve amazing things and spend 30 minutes chasing office buddies with Nerfs. From one day to another, we discovered that bringing some fun in the work environment was not as previously thought, for + 150 years counter productive. We discovered that taking a nap in the middle of the afternoon will not impact us in reaching this very important deadline we have.

I mean, work environment, got a bit shaken by all those new highly successful companies that have valuations higher than certain countries GDP. I mean, we started to realize that making people work more and more and more, without any consideration of their well-being was maybe not such a good idea. But, please, got me right here, most of the companies I know still believe that this “work more and shut the f*** up” policy is the right manner to manage people and achieve more.

And here is the fun things, with those Summer Fridays trend, do you believe those “old fashioned” companies will be able to implement such a practice ? Do you believe they will do it without something in return ? I mean, Google and co did start a long time ago to implement such cool practices for their employees. I mean they have, let say a 10 year cutting edge in doing such things. The old-fashioned companies, they are just “entering the market” and they try to implement such things without any experience and within pretty inflexible structures. I mean they are trying to do the cool things the HR guy discovered is being used at those cool Silicon Valley companies but they do not have the “software” to do so. I mean somewhere, within the company, often at C-Level, you will find somebody that does not understand why it will be profitable for the whole business to offer people to have a Friday off. I mean this C-Level guy will only see that, part of people he pays work 4 days a week instead of 5. He won’t be able to see the plausible gain in productivity on the long term run.
So based on this assumptions, that you are more than welcome to criticize, I highly doubt that the old-fashioned companies will not try to gain something back from the cool move they gently offer their employees. I mean, as long as they do not see what they can get in return, they will try to gain something somewhere like :

  • Encouraging people working later at night
  • Making them feel guilty because they work one day less
  • Encouraging people taking work at home
  • Putting pressure on Thursday afternoon to urge people to work on something
  • Never stop to do all of this every week and increase pressure on people continually and finding it normal
  • Etc…etc…

And personally I do think this is very counter productive and I am pretty sure it harms people more than it makes them happy at the end of the day.

I mean, this kind of very positive and cool things as to be implemented in companies that are READY to do it and that are not looking for any returns at all. It has to be done in a “We are not waiting for something” atmosphere and in companies that truly believe in the positive impact blooming people can provide them.

We speak of company culture in the noblest sense here, we do not speak of cool new stuff to try to make people happy.

The thing is, am I going to help a friend moving because I know that once I will have help him, he will earn me something and will be “obliged” to help me back in the future or do I just help him because he needs help :-)

I think you see my point here. Once again, my own view, don’t hesitate to comment, criticize, more than happy to read you and to debate :-)

If you like this kind of “billet d’humeur” please tell me you do and time to time I will write one or two.

Have a wonderful day and stay classy folks :-)

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