The Benefits & Challenges of a 4 Day Work Week
w/ Alex Pang
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Transcript - The Benefits & Challenges of a 4 Day Work Week
Rich: Um, this episode of team building saves the world.
Alex: It’s really easy for three o’clock to turn into four o’clock, it’s a lot harder for Thursday to turn into Friday, but there is always a concern that you would kind of look lazy compared to the competition. Right? A four day week is a way of solving all of those.
At once with a single change.
Rich: Hello team. It’s me, your old friend,Rich Rininslandhost of team building saves the world. The show where I speak to the leaders and innovators of the team-building industry from all across the globe, trying to find out what about that industry is so important, especially in the world of today. And today we’re taking a long week.
I’m looking at the potentials of a four day workweek with the founder of strategy and rest Alex Pang. The first I need to share some love with my support as a team bonding. If your team is ready to experience teamwork through the power of play and visit team bonding.com to learn more now team, please join me in welcoming the founder of strategy and rest as well as an author of such books as shorter work, better, smarter and less.
Here’s how and rest, why you get more done when you. As well as the distraction addiction, Mr. Alex Pang.
Alex: Hello, Alex.
Rich: Just so you know, that’s a small contingent of chained up people. I have it in my desk. They’re here just to applaud you.
Alex: Hey, I am flattered.
Rich: They’re well cared for and their, uh, insurance is costing me a fortune, but thank you so much for coming on board.
Why don’t we start off, tell everybody a little bit about yourself and how strategy and rest
Alex: sure. So, as you said in the introduction, I’m the author of several books, about the intersection of route of technology work and leisure and creativity. And I started strategy and rest essentially after I had finished sort of my latest book, which is about companies that have moved to four day weeks without cutting salaries and with out sacrificing customer service or productivity or profitability.
Hmm. What I saw in these companies was a set of strategies that they employed over and over again, across a variety of industries and sort of in different, different countries that I wanted to share, not just in the book, but through workshops and other kinds of consulting with firms that wanted to try this themselves.
So that’s mainly what strategy and risks.
Rich: So getting into the four day work week, I can remember as early as the nineties, when we were starting to hear about this as a potential strategy for corporate. And yet it seems to have completely faded from everybody’s radar, but you say that there are companies that are doing it. So what happened? Where did it all go?
Alex: There have been firms since the 1950s, who’ve talked about it. In fact, you were Richard Nixon in 1956, gave a speech where he predicted. The four-day workweek would soon be here. And it was an example of sort of great Republican stewardship of the economy and the partnership between labor and capital that was notable or a notable feature of the GOP.
This is 1956, things have changed somewhat. Right. But I think that there is, you know, Over and over again, we’ve had this idea going back for a very long time that as technology has made work more efficient as it’s, you know, as sort of standards of living have gone up that one of the things we ought to be able to do is to cut working hours.
And I think what’s happened in the last couple of decades have been, you know, with the growing, uh, growing precarious. Of lots of jobs and careers, you know, through gig work through sort of the growing use of temporary labor, you know, ranging from really taxi drivers to professors combined with a model of success that says that you become successful.
Usually at a pretty young age by working Titanic really long hours. And that this is an expression, not just of a desire to succeed, but kind of your worth as a person, right? There’s this moral dimension to it as well. And so all of these things together have created a set of incentives or cultural imperatives that have made overwork seem either inevitable or attractive.
And. You know, what’s notable with the companies that I’ve been studying is that they very explicitly reject that idea. Right. They’re led by people who are. The veterans of water industry, whatever industry they’re there in, um, they themselves have a, have a lot of experience working late nights. You know, they’re familiar with what it takes, what it has taken to be a success, and they think they can do it better that these kinds of sacrifices aren’t really necessary in order to do really good work.
And they think they can push back against this and design companies that operate differently. And it turns out. They can
Rich: okay. How let’s get into it.
Alex: Sure. So, you know, for, or to creative firms for kind of, you know, for kind of knowledge intensive industries, right. You know, a lot of what they do is a bunch of small practices.
So in particular, there are studies that show that. The average knowledge worker loses two to three hours per day to overly long meetings to technology driven distraction to the one quick question that turns into a 10 minute conversation and all of the stuff piled together makes it very difficult to stay on task two.
Really get deeply involved in sort of complicated problems or big projects. And so if you can get a handle on that stuff, on the meetings, on the technology, on the distraction, then you can go a long way to making it possible, to do five days worth of work in four. What these companies do is, you know, the hour long standing meeting every, you know, every Monday turns into a five or 10 minutes stand up.
The default length of meetings goes from, you know, 45 minutes or an hour to 10 or 15 minutes. I know one company that even has, you know, a specific desk instead of uncomfortable chairs that they hold meetings in to help keep them short. And then when it come, you know, another important thing that they do.
Is redesigned the Workday so that they tend to push meetings to later in the day. So that earlier everybody has a chance to focus hard on their most important problems. Right. You get to deal with that kind of stuff. First thing in the morning. And then they’re a lot more thoughtful about how they use technology.
Right? Thing, doing things like having emails. No once or twice a day or time, when you can get off the slack channel or you can avoid other kinds of distractions. And they sound like small things, but put together and reinforced with a culture that says, you know, your time is actually valid. And that we can all cooperate to do these things so that we can all have three-day weekends every week for the rest of our lives.
They’re actually pretty powerful. And then with, you know, stuff like retail establishments with of other kinds of services, blue collar work, it’s really a mix of improvements and process. Sometimes some dramatic improvements in technology enabled us. So there’s a pest control company for. And now several of them that have moved to four day weeks, thanks to improvements in scheduling software and dry and kind of driver routing software.
Traditionally, you know what a pest control professionals spend a lot of time in their trucks, right? Driving from site to site. And this end new AI driven machine learning software has, has made it possible to design. Routes that are a lot more efficient than humans are able to come up with by themselves.
And so what this has meant is that in an industry that traditionally has really struggled to get and to keep good workers, um, you know, you can, now you can now offer them the prospect of the sort of attraction of a four day week, you know, while still being able to hit all of your clients. And sort of serve all of your customers.
And so it generates a win-win for everybody, right? So, you know, so those are, you know, that combination of exploiting technology we’re using technology more thoughtfully, and then a lot of little process improvements are how you make it possible to do five days worth of work. And four
Rich: I would think the simple restructuring of scheduling where four to four day workweek does not necessarily mean Monday through third, You can have it the Tuesday through Friday.
Alex: Exactly. You know, and there are places that will have half their workforce do Monday through Thursday and the other half do Tuesday through Friday because you know, you’re still in a five day world, right. Or, you know, you’ve got customer service that expects to be able to get a, you know, to get a response during regular business hours.
Likewise, some governments have moved to shorter work weeks for their staff, but they’ve actually lengthened office hours. So you create two. No one that goes, let’s say from seven to one and one that goes from 1:00 PM to eight and you know, or one to seven, what that means is for, you know, workers get a shorter work week, but your citizens get have more time to come in to pay their taxes, get their fishing licenses, whatever.
And so that’s another way in which a smart response. To the need to stay responsive, to look like your, you know, order to show that you’re a good steward of the public purse and to make services available to people who have day jobs and often struggle to get into, you know, sort of get into a government office to take care of something, you know, something important.
Rich: But why aren’t we seeing it more often? Why aren’t we seeing it implemented or even just hearing about it even being attempted, we’re not even hearing about the research unless we buy your book. So why does it seem like even now, because I have been a gig worker, my entire professional career, and I have always had that other job that pays for the career I’ve chosen.
So I have been blue collar, white collar, you know, all around, all across the. And you’re still getting those people who are being taught. I work hard. I work long, or I don’t keep my job. Plus you have, plus you have those companies that are, you’re only going to work 30 some hours a week, so we don’t have to pay you for.
We’d have to give you that option.
Alex: Right. You know, I think today the biggest impediments to adoption of a four day week are not technological. They’re really kind of economic and business model related. So if you’ve built a business around gig work or. If you are, let’s say, you know, a big law firm or investment bank, and you assume that you’ve got an inexhaustible supply of 22 year olds.
You can sort of churn through every couple of years. Then this is not a model that really is going to be very attractive and for better or worse, those kinds of businesses have been the ones that have gotten a lot of attention and. Have sort of driven a lot of the conversation about what work looks like now and ought to look like in the future.
The good news, I think, is that, you know, while it is still not terribly common, we are seeing more companies, even during the pandemic adopting a four day week, either permanently or sometimes doing summer hours, right. Where you have three months where you’re doing four day weeks and. They’re also much louder about it than they used to be three years ago.
When I started working on this, you really had to dig around and find the companies that had moved to four day weeks, because they tended not to talk about it publicly. You shared it with your, you know, your most important clients, but there was always a concern that you would kind of look lazy compared to the competition.
Right? The value proposition though has changed. So now when a company starts at the CEO will post something about in about it on LinkedIn or the company blog, or do a press release and you know, and a four day week now is not a sign that you are lazier. It’s a sign that you are better at this game than the competition, right?
Company, Z need six days to get all this stuff done. We can knock it out. And for who’s better at this. No. It also shows that you care about employees. You’re concerned with work-life balance. You want to be more sustainable. There are all kinds of things that now make it look like a more attractive sort of proposition.
And then finally, we’re also starting to see more attention to. In the kind of public policy or political sphere. So know probably most of your listeners don’t follow or have mayoral or national elections in South Korea, but yeah, the mayoral election in Seoul earlier this year, you know, in Seoul is a gigantic city, like a quarter of all Koreans living.
One of the big issues was whether the city could implement policies to support a four-day workweek. And a couple of the candidates were quite strongly in favor of this. Now in the presidential election, there were a couple of the candidates who are saying, you know, this is something that we should revisit.
This is something that Korea should move towards and they are only the latest. Politicians in New Zealand, Scotland, Spain, and elsewhere who have been at least flirting with the idea. No one has yet made it central in their campaigns, but still it is one that is
Rich: the topic is still there. Yeah. They’re talking about it.
There’s part of the conversation.
Alex: Yeah. Yeah. And people are seeing it as a route to election. And you know, when that happens, then, you know, that’s a signal.
Rich: Great Alex, give me one quick, second. I do need to step away if you don’t mind go right ahead, because I want to take a minute to tell everyone about their, about a company.
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From scavenger hunts to jeopardy and so much more the team bonding of activities live virtual and hybrid maximizes the impact of team building with an accent on fun. So visit team bonding.com to schedule your event. Now, team bonding, when you want seriously fun results. And we are back with Alex Pang talking about the possibility of the four-day work week.
Alex, you had mentioned the pandemic, what kind of changes have we seen? Due to the pandemic that might make you the four day workweek, more likely or less likely.
Alex: That’s a great question. There were two big trends and one of them is sort of adoption of things like summer hours by some companies where that, you know, small business really slowed down or whose workforces really put in a lot of effort and the owners felt would have deserved a reward.
So in the latter category, actually the NBA front office would have had. A month where everyone got a four day or a four day week. The second thing is there are some companies that in the process of going remote, figured out how to, you know, sort of knit together or have teams or of workers at a distance effectively enough so that they saw their productivity going up at the same time.
You know, workers are more stressed because. You know, they now had to simultaneously homeschool while, you know, while dealing with clients or, you know, we’re trying to do their, uh, do other work. Yeah, there was a greater need for more free time, more personal time. And so these companies recognized that, you know, the technology investments that they had made in order to perform during the pandemic also made it possible for them to start shortening working hours.
And there a whole bunch of companies now that have taken some of the, essentially taken some of those technology driven productivity gains and shared them back with their employees. And so when this book first came. And it actually came out a week before the pandemic really hit in the United States.
Right now I assumed, okay. You know, history’s worst timing with publishing, right? That this was sort of the movement was it was going to, you know, sort of wither. But I’ve been really surprised to see that the opposite has happened right. More companies in the last year have joined the four day week movement than I think in the earth.
You know, since I started tracking this several years ago,
Rich: we have, of course, what we’ve been seeing and talking about on the podcast for the past season have been the, the move to almost full remote, if not a hybrid of the two. And one of the things everybody had been talking about is the fact that when you are dealing with a remote workforce, You’re winding up with people who working more than eight hours a day, just naturally.
So does it seem more likely that we can easily transfer those people and do a four day work week and, and, you know, make that an easy transfer over? Or are we, are we still saying no, that that’s not the case?
Alex: That’s a good question. I mean, I think that the overwork, from what I can tell is more a function of sort of like work family or work home interference, right?
The fact that you, that you’re trying to juggle both of these things. And so you end up spending more time or it of having to work on both of them because, you know, you’re, you simply can’t do one particularly effectively while you’re also trying to do the other, you know, the other thing that has driven some companies towards.
Um, preferring a four day week over flexible work. Is it it’s still good to have those time boundaries that one of the, you know, the things that the pandemic has showed us is that if it was difficult for us to unplug when everybody who’s in an office yeah. It’s become even harder now. And so having the social norm that says, you know, that nobody’s going to be expected to check their email or do any work on Fridays is a really bright line.
And I think in a way as much clearer than saying, well, you know, we can all stop at three o’clock. It’s really easy for three o’clock to turn into four o’clock it’s a lot harder for Thursday to turn into Friday. Very true.
Rich: I heard that actually just a recently I heard that Portugal had to pass a law stating that companies are not allowed to call their employees after a certain.
Just to make sure that they’re still, that work-life balance going on. That’s amazing.
Alex: It is. Yeah. You know, the Portuguese have been doing some pretty interesting stuff with sort of legislation around work-life balance and it’ll be interesting to see how that plays out, you know, with there were other EU countries that have talked about or have.
Some CA or encouraged companies to adopt policies of that sort. But the research, you know, stepping back the research is really clear that giving people the opportunity to sort of switch off their phones, you know, to put their minds out of the office, Is really, really valuable for psychological recovery, for reducing burnout and also in the long run from making people and companies happier and more productive places.
So, you know, I think that the, you know, as is always the case with legislation, the devil is in the details, but it’s certainly, I think a move in the right direction with the right intention
Rich: and those companies that are dragging their feet into this let’s prove that. Let’s let’s bring them into the future with this.
What are we looking at? How do you make it work and what are the benefits that.
Alex: Sure. So, you know, the companies, companies that do it are trying to solve or have everyday existential issues, right. You’ve got a founder who is, you know, six months from burning out and taking the company down with them.
You’ve got recruitment and retention issues. You have problems with work-life balance, right? How you do it is it’s really an initiative that is driven from the top, but implemented from the bottom, by which I mean. In a small company, you need like the charismatic leader who can say, we’re going to try something really dramatically different, but nobody knows everybody else’s job well enough to tell them how to do it in four days.
And so you need to empower people to try new things, to make mistakes, to sort of experiment and iterate. You know, if I was, if I was advising a company and you know, I actually do advise companies. So basically what I do is work them through a process of thinking about, okay, if you want to move to a four day week, what day can you get rid of.
Right. What day can you close? Right. And in some industries that’s really, really clear. The next question is what could go wrong and how do you prepare? How do you prepare? So that, that doesn’t actually happen. Right? Right. So you think through worst case scenarios, which not only gives you strategic responses, but it also helps people work through their own concerns, their own fears and, and gives them a sense that they can actually make this work.
The next thing is. What your KPIs ought to be. Right? Most companies take the position that if we can do the same work in four days, that’s a huge win, right? They’re not trying to be dramatically more productive, but if you can hit your deadlines, you know, if your clients are satisfied, that’s fantastic, whatever standard you choose though, be explicit about it because your employees want those kinds of benefits.
Against which they can measure their own performance and make adjustments as they need. And then I think that the, you know, the final important thing is make really clear to everybody that this is an experiment, right? You do a trial for generally three months, sometimes six months. And if it doesn’t work, then.
You go back to a five day week, and that does wonders for getting people to cooperate for encouraging more collaboration for taking it seriously, rather than treating it just as a perk and. You do all those things. And I think your odds of success go up pretty dramatically, no matter what industry you’re in.
As for the benefits, you know, we talked about recruitment and retention, burnout, creativity, you know, recruitment and retention, or go way, way up, you know, there are industries where. The companies that were having turnover of 150% in some functions that went down to 20%, right? This is, and you know, this is true.
Even in industries where job hopping is very, very common. So retention, you know, you get more skilled. Particularly for young companies or for startups, you’re suddenly able to attract those people with 10 or 15 years experience who maybe have, you know, a child or two who maybe have struggled in previous jobs with juggling those things who now, you know, who are maybe less attracted by high salaries that they’re going to have to spend on nannies and, you know, sort of nannies and therapy.
Um, and instead like the idea of being able to. To take their expertise and apply it to working a four day week and having more time with family. And then I think, you know, there’s also evidence that it makes companies more sustainable, more sustainable, both of their human resources, but also more sustainable because you know, the lights are off one more day per week.
And so we’re starting to see some savings in energy and lower carbon footprint though. You know, I think we need, you know, we still need to gather more data about that. You know, but I think that if you’re a company for whom recruiting good people and keeping good people is, you know, a make or break proposition.
If you’re a founder who doesn’t want to burn out, if you want your company to be more sustainable, if you want clients to be happy. Now, if none of those things matter to you, then, you know, just stick with a five day, week or longer. But if those are things that you know, that you are concerned about a four day week is a way of.
All of those problems at once with a single change. So that’s the problem. Okay.
Rich: What about to the employees? What about to those people who are? Cause I was raised by a father who was born in the forties and raised in the fifties. I was taught you work. You work hard, you do it until you’re in your sixties.
And then you can actually have your moment for your.
Alex: First off, you’re still working hard, you know, a four day week is not an easy thing to easy thing to pull off. You’ve got to be really thoughtful about how you work. You have to, you know, focus on the stuff that really matters. Be a little more ruthless about saying no to the things that don’t.
So, you know, it remains, I think, you know, for people who like their work and kind of like the challenge of, of sort of meeting challenges. It actually provides plenty of those, right? The kinds of the kinds of psychological satisfaction that we get from doing difficult things well is just as present in a four day week as, or as an, a fast, however, I think that.
We have over the last couple years, been in a situation where we all have been asking ourselves how important should work, really be in our lives. Right. How much time should it be able to command? Right. And we have an opportunity to do a reset here. And I th you know, these companies show us that it’s possible to continue to do really good work, to satisfy clients, to come out with new products.
But, you know, in a way that does not assume that people have to work right to the edge of burnout. Right. And that I think, you know, and, you know, sacrifice family or sacrifice, you know, sacrifice relationships with kids. Yeah. I think, you know, these days that looks even more attractive to more people than, than ever
Rich: bless you.
You’re talking about well, rested group. You’re talking about suddenly, you know, while yes, I am pushing myself for those four days harder than I might have over five. I’ve got a whole three-day weekend forever to look forward to.
Alex: Yeah. And people will use the time in different ways. There’s I am shocked at how few stories I hear of people like going on three day benders people.
It turns out do ridiculously wholesome things on them. Another day of the week, they do volunteer work. They spend time with family, they do professional development stuff. Occasionally people will have. You know, really serious hobbies or side gigs that they can invest a little more time in. But even in those cases, often there are indirect benefits for the company.
You know, I, I have a couple of stories of new products that accompany develops after. One of their people gets really interested in some new technology or does a deep dive on their own time into, you know, some new industry area just for themselves. People regularly talk about getting healthier, being able to eat better, you know, cooked better.
I have time for hobbies, have time for family. And you know, all of that is stuff that makes their lives much better and makes them, you know, much better and well-rounded as employees as well. Okay.
Rich: So let’s say you’re an employee who your company has decided. It’s going to give this a try where we’re doing the biggest.
Three to six months, this is what we’re going to do. While you said everybody has to learn their own way through making it function for them. Do you have any advice you might give to the new employee who is terrified? This is not going to work, that they’re not going to be able to get enough done.
Alex: Yeah, you know, I think the first, the first thing I would say is that people around the world and all kinds of industries, you know, from nursing homes to billion dollar software, Have figured out how to make this work.
So, you know, odds are, you can, to, the next thing is that this is not just about you maximizing your own productivity or efficiency. It’s about you and your colleagues working together. And I think that’s really important, you know, all too often, we think of. We think our productivity is very much a kind of personal thing, much as work-life balance is, but, you know, just as we all have challenges like juggling family and sort of school and other kinds of commitments with work, we all have the same set of commitments that we’re trying to work through.
And so achieving a four day week is not something that just involves you, making your own work more. It’s about working with others and helping, you know, helping your colleagues get through their work by respecting their time, by having better meeting discipline by resisting those interruptions so that they can get stuff done so that you can all leave on Thursday and enjoy the three-day weekend.
I think the other thing is that it is, you know, be prepared for. Along the way for missteps and for failures, everybody tries things that don’t work out. You’ve got some technology that you think that will help that turns out to be completely useless or doesn’t really work for you. The challenge there is not to avoid failure, but to iterate quickly, to learn from it and then to build on your failure rather than sort of stumble over it.
And then the, you know, the last thing is sort of be aware of what constitutes success. Right. Always keep in mind what it is that you’ve got to do in order to make the four day week a permanent thing. And that will help you clarify a lot of choices about how you spend your time, how you work and what you say yes to and what you say no to.
So that’s what I would tell someone who’s hesitant.
Rich: And to be clear, you’re not saying, forget about socializing. You’re just saying to, to put in its proper.
Alex: Exactly. So, you know, um, the Mo you know, um, I, I know companies that, that have specific times for like, you know, deep dive focused work, but everyone will also go out to lunch together.
And you know, what they tell me is that you get more than. In that first period, you know, two hours of deep dive time than you would in like a regular four hours. Plus the social life is better because you are actually sitting and eating together, right. It can sound like having those boundaries between work time and social time.
Sounds kind of unfair. Actually the opposite is the case. Having those boundaries makes each one of them sort of richer and better.
Rich: Great topic. Love the conversation, Alex, thank you so much for coming up over the scan. I just want to end with this one last question. How do we make it happen? You know, do we have to go Portugal’s route?
And the government actually say that this is what they want to do before it’s going to happen or can the free market actually managed to manifest this.
Alex: Okay. You know, so far, lots of companies have done it on their own without any government help. I think there is still plenty of space for companies to figure it out for themselves.
I do think at this stage that there are policy incentives. And I have to confess I’m not a political or policy person, so I’m just channeling what other smart people have told me that there are things that you could do to incentivize companies to take up a four day week, right? Rewards and reductions in payroll taxes or things of that sort that would encourage companies while, while not dictating to them.
Exactly how they’re going to go about doing it in places that, you know, in Iceland, for example, the entire Icelandic public sector has moved to a shorter work week and it took. Eight months of negotiations between the labor union and the government, and then another eight months of kind of working it out at the shop floor and kind of hospital and customs house level to figure out all, you know, to figure out all the details for what do you do in this case.
And, you know, and in this case, and with this kind of worker, and so in big institutions, I think there is an awful lot of stuff that has to happen at the front end, but even in Iceland, Where you’ve got 90% union representation and the public sector is 15% of the economy. They decided, you know what? We really ought to leave it up to individual workplaces to figure out how to implement this.
And I think that that is, you know, that’s, that’s probably a smart move for. All of us. So at this stage incentives, not requirements, but I think that you would get more companies interested in this and more companies making the decision to do it if they had some kind of support of that sort.
Fantastic. Thank you so much, Alex. I’m going to go right out. I mean, you sold me. I’m going to go right out and call my boss. I’m only working four days from now.
Ladies and gentlemen, please let me know my team give a big round of applause for Alex Pang and Alex, can you tell my team out there more about where they can learn more about you, your books and your company?
Alex: Sure. So on social media, Twitter, Instagram, and so on. I am asked Pang, ask P a N. Very conveniently my initials.
Um, and then one of my company is strategy and rest, and that is the URL for that is just strategy.rest, happily for me rest as a top level domain. And then, you know, my books are available at, you know, all fine bookstores and at the other place online. So.
Rich: Yeah, that’s great. Thank you so much. Oh, Alex, I wish I could continue talking to you about this. Uh, this is a fascinating topic and I would love to know more, but we do have some more time to talk because it’s time to put you on the. From a speed round.
all right. My friends. So just like I just described to you earlier, this is simply going to be 60 seconds where I’m going to play some music in the background and ask you a bunch of innocuous questions about you. And then you’re just going to try to answer as quickly as you can. The objective here is to see how many answers you can get.
Good. You can list how many answers you get in 60 seconds. If you’re feeling competitive at all, the big number this season to beat is 11. So right. Let’s actually wait, just wait for the music to start. I’ll start asking you questions and away we go. What’s your name?
Alex: Alex pong.
Rich: How many children do you have?
Rich: Which one’s your favorite?
Alex: Oh, they’re both my favorite.
Rich: Excellent. Uh, if you were invisible for a day, what would you do?
Alex: Uh, Good heavens I would find out what the dogs do when I’m not here.
Rich: Uh, what city would you love to live in for the rest of your life?
Rich: if you could be any historical figure, which would you be?
Alex: Um, good. Heavens Gangas con
Rich: what’s your favorite movie?
Alex: Favorite movie inception.
Rich: What do you think is the perfect age to get married?
If you could time travel, where would you go
in century? 19th century on one.
Alex: What’s your best childhood memory? That’s childhood memory. Favorite holiday Christmas.
Rich: I got it out. So I’m going to give it to you and guess what? My.
Alex: That was nine
answers for my entire season. Well done,
Alex: Alex, I’m going to have to come back on the show and see if I can beat that.
Rich: Excellent. Love to have you back. If anything for next season, we’ll start your earlier. So you’ll be the top of score and everybody will just have.
thank you again, Alex, once again, ladies and gentlemen, Mike team out there and give a big round of applause for Alex Pang.
Thank you so much for
coming on board Alex and sharing this really important topic. I look forward to seeing where this goes in the future. Now that more people are talking about it, especially people who listen to pod. As for you out there, my team, that’s it. We’re wrapping up yet. Another episode of Dean building saves the world.
If you’re a fan of this podcast or just happen upon it because you love this topic, please be sure to share it with all your friends, your neighbors, your coworkers, everyone, you know, who has ears attached to a brain and heart, because they’re kind of want to know all about these topics. You can learn more about us and all of the topics we’ve talked about forever in this podcast, by going to team bonding.com forward slash podcast.
That’s fine. All of our previous episodes, you can find us all the social media is at teen bond. Podcasts. Go ahead on there. Leave me a like leaving you subscribe. Leave me a message. If there’s a good message out there, I’m going to read it here. Live on the air so far. I
haven’t found one, but I’m
looking and I continue to look, but for you, my friends, everybody out there, please always remember.
Never forget if you are within the sound of my voice, you are forever on my team now, and I’m always going to be on yours though, until we talk to each other. You guys take care of yourself.
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December 13, 2021
Is a 4-day work week right for your company?
The concept of a 4-day work week has been around since The Great Depression, however, it has yet to be implemented on a larger scale. Studies have shown there are benefits of a 4 day work week such as an increase in productivity and a decrease in some overhead costs. Making 32 hours a normal work week instead of 40 might be just what companies need to improve their employees’ well-being, turnover, and retention.
There are challenges with a 4 day work week. For example, what is good for one individual may not be good for an entire team. Alex Pang gives insight on how we may be able to creatively get around these challenges.
“You know, and there are places that will have half their workforce do Monday through Thursday and the other half do Tuesday through Friday because you know, you’re still in a five day world, right. Or, you know, you’ve got customer service that expects to be able to get a, you know, to get a response during regular business hours.” – Alex Pang
Alex Soojung-Kim Pang: Alex is a Silicon Valley-based consultant. Through his company Strategy + Rest, and his trilogy of books— SHORTER: Work Better, Smarter and Less— Here’s How (Public Affairs, 2020); REST: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less (Basic Books, 2016), and THE DISTRACTION ADDICTION (Little Brown, 2013)— Alex shows how companies and individuals can better integrate rest, creativity, and focus into digital-age lives and work. Before founding Strategy & Rest, Alex was a researcher at Microsoft Research Cambridge, Oxford University, Stanford University, and UC Berkeley, and a senior consultant at Institute for the Future and Strategic Business Insights. Alex received a Ph.D. in history and sociology of science from the University of Pennsylvania.
" The average knowledge worker loses two to three hours per day to overly long meetings to technology-driven distraction to the one quick question that turns into a 10-minute conversation and all of the stuff piled together makes it very difficult to stay on task two."- Alex
Season 4 | Episode 20
Lisa Nordquist’s Proven Strategies To Transform Your Organization. On this episode of Team Building Saves the World we wrap up Season 4 with leadership expert Lisa Nordquist. Join us as we explore practical insights, success stories, and actionable strategies for effective leadership, employee engagement, and organizational change. Listen as we uncover the keys to putting theories into practice, as Lisa shares her invaluable experiences and innovative approaches, guiding listeners towards a transformative journey in pursuit of organizational excellence. You don’t want to miss this one.
Season 4 | Episode 19
On this episode of Team Building Saves the World we dove into the distinction between corporate social responsibility and regular charitable team building events with our CSR Creative Director Baylee Goldstein. The holiday season is a perfect time to bring your team closer together. Join us as we explore creative holiday giving ideas that not only foster camaraderie but also benefit those in need. We’ll provide ways your team can give back year-round and how to make a lasting impact this holiday season while improving employee engagement & company culture.
Season 4 | Episode 18
In this episode of Team Building Saves the World, we delve into the concept of Team MOJO with Diane Egbers—how to cultivate it and sustain the vital synergy that leads to exceptional productivity and performance in organizations. We explore the key ingredients for building Team MOJO, the role of emotional intelligence, strategies for adapting to changing team dynamics, and its connection to mental health and inclusion in the workplace. Be sure to listen to gain insights and practical advice from Diane in improving team synergy, leadership development, and executive coaching.
Season 4 | Episode 17
Mistakes, failures, errors, blunders, and mishaps. Are you feeling uncomfortable yet? No one is perfect, but we all hope for a perfect performance at work. Guess what? It’s not going to happen! In this episode of Team Building Saves the World, we dive deep into the world of workplace culture with company culture expert Chris Dyer. Discover why avoiding mistakes may hinder your organization’s growth, and learn how embracing failure can be a catalyst for innovation. Chris shares practical examples of how cultivating a culture that welcomes risk-taking and learning from failures can lead to colossal business success. We also explore strategies for effective team building and employee engagement, making this episode a valuable resource for leaders and individuals aiming to thrive in today’s evolving business landscape.
Season 4 | Episode 16
Regular corporate training can be blah. In this episode, we explore innovative corporate training approaches that go beyond traditional methods with Jayne Hannah and Amy Angelili. They discuss transformative programs like Laughter Yoga and how they can aid in motivating your team, reshape work culture, enhance teamwork, and inspire personal growth. Join us as we champion a new era of engaging corporate training that sparks lasting change.
Season 4 | Episode 15
An employee listening strategy is more than just a survey. It’s a process—asking employees for feedback, understanding and analyzing their perspectives, and taking meaningful action to improve employee experience and engagement. A survey alone does not improve engagement. Listen as Shane McFeely, Ph.D. speaks with Rich about what research shows employees want from their organizations when it comes to employee surveys and what organizations can do to create and improve upon their employee listening strategy. Don’t miss this episode packed with practical tips for crafting a more engaged and empowered workforce.
Season 4 | Episode 14
In this episode of Team Building Saves the World, we explored how storytelling can be a way to engage, motivate, and inspire productivity in employees, leaders, and companies with expert Karen Eber. Rich and Karen discuss the importance of storytelling in building a sense of purpose and psychological safety, fostering communication, reinforcing company values, and helping to create a positive workplace culture.
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