The trial-turned-international phenomenon of the four-day week has prompted the establishment of a new entity, 4 Day Week Global, and appointment of a CEO dedicated to its continued advocacy and to help deliver on the demand for global uptake.
The prospect of a four-day week has been idealised for some time, though it was a successful trial at New Zealand trustee company Perpetual Guardian in 2018 which showed it was practical and possible by delivering positive results for productivity, profitability and staff wellbeing and engagement. That trial sparked a global movement.
Four-day week innovator Andrew Barnes says, “The results of our bold decision to test our assumptions about productivity made headlines around the world. We have spoken to international business leaders, presented at industry events and participated in government panels about the far-reaching benefits of our four-day week model, and concluded that the world needs this to catch on.
“The rise of the gig economy represents a new industrial era and we must act now to protect workers’ rights and wellbeing. We have established 4 Day Week Global as a gear shift in our movement — it’s time to deliver.
“To lead the four-day week forward and build the blueprint for the workplace of the future, we have appointed Charlotte Lockhart as CEO of 4 Day Week Global. Charlotte’s commitment to research and creating global conversations by establishing and leading campaigns in global markets makes her well placed to kick this into delivery mode.”
Charlotte Lockhart has an extensive business background in the financial and legal services sectors. She is on the advisory boards of the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council and the Kupe Scholarship Programme at the University of Auckland, and the board of the newly created Wellbeing Research Centre at Oxford University. As CEO of 4 Day Week Global, she works with partners in international markets – supporting the launch of the 4 Day Week movement in the US and Ireland – to promote the benefits of a productivity-focused and reduced-hour workplace.
Ms Lockhart says the new entity is the culmination of this movement. “It has been created as a community where businesses, employees, media, academics, government and political entities can connect and share ideas. It is designed as an open vehicle where those who are demanding a shift to this way of working can access valuable resources and contribute to its global revolution.
“Our vision is for 4 Day Week Global to provide the tools needed for those who want to implement a four-day week in their business, promote the idea or conduct research. We are working with the University of Oxford, Auckland University of Technology and the University of Auckland on research into the future of work and the economics of wellbeing in the workplace — an international body of research that will be a valuable resource and which will form the baseline for regular global research on this movement.”