‘My 4-day week’ featuring Deane Marwa

As part of the ‘My 4-day week’ campaign we spoke to Deane Marwa, Learning Success Manager at Think Productive, to find out the best bits about working for a progressive company. Think Productive not only offers its staff a four-day working week, but it’s been doing so since 2011. This forward-thinking company works to enhance wellbeing and productivity in the workplace of other organisations too, by offering attention management training and workshops across the globe. Want to find out what life is like at Think Productive? Read on!

The best thing about working for a 4-day week company?

The best thing about working for a four-day week company is that the organisation is truly people-centred: people are at the heart of everything. That includes team members and supporting our clients as best we can. The People First culture umbrellas everything: from our 4DW schedule to our meeting procedures and all processes.

How does working four days a week effect your productivity/ time management?

At Think Productive, we never use the phrase ‘time management’ as time can’t be managed – it doesn’t stretch, or bend. Instead, we talk about attention management. We are openly ruthless and prioritise what we can and can’t do – as a team. Having a 3-day weekend makes me happier – and when I am happier, I produce better work. It is that simple.

How do you spend your extra day-off?

I am really lucky that my husband does not work on Fridays. We try to do something lovely together while the kids are at school. So far, we have had an afternoon tea, a spa day, a shopping day, a movie day and lots of nice lunches.

Have you noticed any mental or physical health benefits to working a four day week?

Well, I have lost a stone. I have the headspace and time to food shop and cook from scratch. My previous job was as a teacher, and I worked every evening and all-day Sunday – I used junk food to reward myself. But now time is the best reward.

How do people respond when you tell them you work a 4-day week?

All my friends and family are really happy for me. They saw me tired and exhausted for 18 years as a teacher and everyone I know says I have never seemed happier. I get lots of ‘can you get me a job?’ comments!

Would you ever go back to a five day week job?

No. But I want to add that working 4DW isn’t a magic wand for employee happiness and retention. It must be coupled with underlying policies that set boundaries, ensure transparency and absolute clarity. A 4DW on its own is not the solution.

If you want to find out more about Think Productive, check out our other blog too.