The “overwork epidemic” is a serious problem world-wide. In Japan, there’s even a word for it; to die by karōshi is to suffer a heart attack or stroke brought on by unrelenting overtime and occupational stress. In addition to the negative impact on health and well-being, working too much is bad for productivity. According to a recent study, employees who put in more than 50 hours a week – as nearly half of US workers do – show a sharp decline in output right around the 50 hour mark. Read on to discover why some business owners are embracing a four hour work week – and decide whether a less-is-more approach is right for you. The benefits of balance A New Zealand firm found that productivity significantly improved when a four day work week was implemented; remarkably, 78% of employees reported the change helped them better manage their work-life balance. In addition to reduced stress, improved mental health, and greater work satisfaction, one less day in the office each week can also help nurture:
- greater focus, energy, and commitment to the job
- a sense of empowerment at work
- better overall performance and
- increased loyalty and retention.