THE BASIS POINT

Do No-Work Fridays Result In Less Quitting Or More Firing?

 

The low- to no-work Friday feels more like a seasonal slacking story than a trend. And quiet quitting plays for social media climbers but hobbles corporate climbers.

 

The Financial Times just interviewed a bunch of workers at big companies in New York who say no-meeting or no-camera Fridays have devolved into just taking Fridays off. A separate FT story today notes how Goldman Sachs will add 440 more job cuts to 3200 cuts already made this year — this time cutting bottom performers. So go ahead, take Fridays off (openly or on the sly), and see what happens.

One worker told FT “Friday is just a dead day,” which makes a good headline that either feeds the quiet quitting narrative or claims that low- to no-work Fridays make workers happier and more efficient.

Let’s pretend that claim is true for a minute … that low- or no-work Fridays result in more productivity and less quiet quitting.

The FT cites a 4-day work week pilot that 61 British companies did in 2022. The companies reduced work hours 20% for 6 months, mostly by giving workers Fridays off.

The FT reports “researchers said fewer employees at participating companies quit, while revenue rose by a third on average compared with the same period in 2021.”

Again, good stuff on paper, but I don’t buy it as a broad proof point on The State of Work in 2023.

Work is intense. Great companies are intense. Period.

As a rule, Friday fearers and quiet quitters will generally get lapped by their peers or land on job cut lists. More power those who don’t, but they are the exceptions.

The low- to no-work Friday feels more like a seasonal slacking story than a trend. And quiet quitting plays for social media climbers but hobbles corporate climbers.

Comment below and tell me if I’m missing something here.

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Reference:

‘Friday is just a dead day’: how a summer perk became a year-round staple

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