KUALA LUMPUR, 17 JULY 2023 – The traditional five-day workweek has been the norm for centuries, but in recent times, the idea of a four-day workweek has gained popularity. With the aim of boosting productivity, creativity and quality of life, Mad Hat Asia has undertaken a series of innovative experiments to enhance employee satisfaction and work-life balance.
As part of these initiatives, the creative communications agency has implemented a novel policy, wherein one Friday a month is granted as a dedicated day off. This pioneering approach results in the creation of a recurring monthly phenomenon known as the “Mad Long weekend,” affording valued employees extended periods of rejuvenation and leisure time.
“Creativity is our lifeblood at Mad Hat Asia, and our Hatter Capital (our people), our prized assets. We continuously invest in providing adaptive environments that fuel both creativity and productivity. This measured approach towards the four-day work week is a game-changing move for us, aimed to boost creative delivery for our trusted client partners and retain top talent. While we believe it is only a matter of time before the four-day work week is widely adopted globally, the Mad Long Weekend initiative is our first step towards shaping our workflow and practices sustainably towards this impending new standard. So far, the feedback has been encouraging.” says Rengeeta Rendava, Founder and Managing Director of Mad Hat Asia.
The Mad Long Weekend so far
The feedback that Mad Hat has received from their employees has been overwhelmingly positive. Many employees have reported feeling more creative, constructive with troubleshooting, and more focused on their days at work, as a result of having an extra day off.
However, like with any changes to work schedules, there are both benefits and drawbacks to a four-day workweek. Here are some of the key ones:
- Improved rest and personal time: Having an extra day off each week allows the employees to have more time to relax, spend time with family, pursue hobbies, and run errands without eating into too much of their downtime.
- With the implementation of a shorter workweek, the employees demonstrate heightened motivation and a sharper focus, leading to enhanced efficiency and effectiveness during their designated workdays.
- Improved mental health: A shorter workweek helps reduce overall stress leading to improved mental health.
- Condensed daily workload: Shorter period of time to execute the same amount of work, calls for some high productivity. Sometimes, leading to longer work hours.
- Difficulty in coordination: While Mad Hat Asia is navigating shorter work-weeks with a healthy dose of forward planning, there have still been occasional challenges in coordinating with partners, clients, or vendors who operate on a different schedule.
The four-day workweek was also put to the test in the UK, with an overall positive response to the trial. Dubbed the largest trial of its kind, employees at 61 companies across Britain worked an average of 34 hours across four days between June and December 2022, while earning their existing salary. Of those, 56 companies, or 92%, opted to continue like that, 18 of them permanently, as reported by FMT.
So what does this mean for our Mad Long Weekends?
A four-day workweek may not be suitable for everyone, but for those willing to embrace it, the potential benefits can be transformative. As Mad Hat Asia aims to expand the concept of Mad Long Weekends, the company eagerly anticipates witnessing the positive impact of this arrangement, not only on the employees’ lives but also on their work. As they bring more focused, effective, and creatively open minds to the four-day workweek, the company envisions remarkable outcomes.
*Disclaimer: Leading by context this is practiced without compromising urgent communications, activations, social media, and community engagement.