madebywild
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madebywild

Our Roadmap to a 4-Day Work Week

At wild, we’ve read enough about a shorter work week to know about the benefits for our team, our company and our clients. But there is also a certain amount of risk you’re facing as a digital agency whose biggest asset are its people and their creative output. This is our roadmap to limit those risks.

Illustration by Midjourney — Prompt: a black and white illustration of a four day work week ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

tl;dr

Our definition of a 4-Day Work Week:

  • Work from Monday to Thursday
  • Work 8 hours per day; A total of 32 hours per week
  • Get paid the same as before

Our Roadmap:

  • Block No.00: No-Launch-Fridays ☑
  • Block No.01: No-Meeting-Friday policy ☑
  • Block No.02: Half-Fridays ☑
  • Block No.03: Full-Fridays
  • Block No.04: PLAY Days & YAY Days
  • Block No.05: 4-Day Work Week

Our Goal:

  • Happier team
  • More creativity
  • More efficiency
  • Better quality
  • Happier clients

The Roadmap

There is a lot of literature about the benefits of a shorter work week, and we agree(!), but it’s hard to find someone publicly talking about the risks. In the end, wild is something we’ve built over the last 9 years. If the 4DWW doesn’t work out, how do we get back without a big loss of motivation? We have to make sure that this really works for our team and our clients. That’s why we decided to do a step-by-step roadmap that’s made out of building blocks. If a block doesn’t work out, we’ll fall back to the previous one, evaluate & try again.

Apart from the blocks, there is a lot of optimization we’re doing when it comes to meetings & calls, communication, our workflow, the tools we’re using and much more. (Let us know if you’re interested in this)

Block No.00: No-Launch-Fridays ☑

It’s quite obvious, even if you don’t think about a 4DWW: Never launch on Fridays. It seems like bugs have this magical talent to hide ‘till you push the “live” button. Someone will find it and — if you launch on a Friday — they’ll most certainly let you know about it while you’re having friends over for dinner on a Saturday evening.

We’ve learned that lesson the hard way, and that’s why we stopped scheduling launches on Fridays. Without knowing, this was wild’s first step into a 4DWW.

Block No.01: No-Meeting-Friday policy ☑

In 2019, wild was growing and so was the amount of projects we took on at the same time. Our calendar was packed with internal check-ins, client calls, presentations, cake-eating-competitions, you name it. We just wanted to gain some distraction-free time. So, we introduced our No-Meeting-Friday Policy.

Block No.02: Half-Fridays ☑

Getting out of lockdown #4 in Austria, we felt the urge to create something to improve the mental well-being of our employees. We started the wild sports club, transformed wild into a virtual first agency and introduced our Half-Fridays. So now, every other week, half the team gets half the day off.

Block No.03: Full-Fridays

Because Half-Fridays have been working really well for the last year, we’re starting Full-Fridays in October 2022. We’ll have half the team off for a full Friday every other week. Same salary, 16 hours more time to enjoy life, recharge your batteries and finally catch up on the latest season of Love Island.

Block No.04: PLAY Days & YAY Days

If Full-Fridays are working as smooth as Half-Fridays, we’ll introduce alternating PLAY Days and YAY Days in January 2023.

On two Fridays a month, PLAY Days are used for sideprojects, learning new tools or programming languages, reading books about work-life-balance and much more.

YAY Days are like Full-Fridays with a catchier name.

Block No.05: 4-Day Work Week

The final step — as the title promised — would be the 4-Day Work Week, meaning less hours, same salary. Coming to a wild office near you in July 2023.

Final Thoughts

Our roadmap might not be for everyone, especially not for every industry, maybe not even for us. It is an experiment, a constant work in progress which we’ll rethink, evaluate and adjust to what works best for wild. Mistakes will be made on the way, but we do this because we think it’s worth it.

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Matthias Mentasti

Matthias Mentasti

design & partner @madebywild living in Vienna / Austria — loves airline food