Simon Ursell, MD of B Corp and environmental consultancy Tyler Grange awoke in the middle of the night, the nightmare he’d just had playing on his mind. He had dreamt that his competitors had beat him to the punch when it came to the four-day working week.
Over the past 12 months, the leadership team at Tyler Grange had already spoken with working parents at the organisation, who were already completing at least as much work as full-time employees – sometimes more so – as well as other businesses that had changed working patterns, in a bid to determine the best way to work.
“It wasn’t so much that it was a competition or a race [with the four-day week],” he says. “I realised that if we went first, we’d get quite a lot of downsides from being an early adopter, but we get every upside. If we were last, you get some downsides and no upsides because everybody else is already done it.
“That’s when we decided to do it.”
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Then came the time to communicate to the wider team
“You’d expect, if you tell everybody you want to pay them the same amount of money for four days a week rather than five, that everybody would be cheering,” says Simon. “There was excitement, but the reality was that our very best people were really worried about it.”
The fact that they needed to deliver 100% of the work in 80% of the time concerned people
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