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We’ve got to stop working 9 to 5

A lot has changed over the last few months. The way we socialise, the way we (desperately try to) educate our kids, and the way we work. Lots of us have gone from commuting to a fixed office every day to working from home. One thing that hasn’t changed for most people though, is the 9am to 5pm work day. We would argue that our current working day is outdated and restrictive, and that shaking things up could have huge benefits for our productivity and work-life balance.

A quick Google search will tell you that the 9 to 5 first emerged during the Industrial Revolution in Britain, but really hit the mainstream when Henry Ford introduced it for his employees in the 1920s. Because Ford was such a prominent employer in the States, his decision sparked a wider movement in the country and beyond, and the formalised working day was born. Although it’s now standard working practice for us in the UK, a YouGov survey in 2018 found that only 6% of people were actually logging those hours every day, with many people working a much longer day, or going part-time to fit around their life commitments. 

With many of us now working from home rather than a fixed office, it’s the perfect time to experiment with abandoning office hours in favour of letting your team work whenever suits them best. Here are three reasons why.

Get the most out of your people

You might have team members who think clearly in the morning. Others might be at their most creative at night. They might want to fit in a quick jog before opening their laptop, or want to walk around the park during meetings. Let them. It’s incredible what people produce when they’re firing on all cylinders.

Deliver great work

By adopting a deadline-driven approach, you can encourage your team to hit their deadlines however they want. To do this, set clear expectations and then trust your team to get the work done their way. We find this delivers consistently great results for us and our clients. It also allows people to take downtime when their workload is lower, and ramp up when things are busy. Nobody is left twiddling their thumbs at their desk, and we get the most out of our team’s working hours.

Happy clients, happy team

By having a fully agile team, we are able to deliver work on brief, on time and on budget, which always makes for happy clients. And by valuing and allowing them to prioritise their commitments and passions outside of work, we know we have a happier, more well-rounded workforce. It’s a true win-win. 

We’re living in a weird new world where the old rules don’t apply. Why not take the opportunity to make your own rules, and allow your team to thrive? If you’re anything like Skin and Blister, you’ll never look back.


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