Implement 4-Day Work Week for Nonprofits: Guide to Attract & Retain Employees

by PRC Agency PR

A few years ago, a friend of mine told me his company was implementing a four-day workweek - and I was stumped. But apparently, Sweden is way ahead of us here - they were actually testing this way back in 2015.

That's almost 10 years ago.

But it's not too late for us. Let's just say we're late bloomers - and that's ok.

If lately, you've been getting the feeling that the four-day workweek is "everywhere," you're not wrong. It's definitely been gaining steam since the pandemic. In fact, in a recent article TIME Magazine said that 2023 might be the year the 4DWW stops being a pipe dream.

While that's great, as a business owner, you probably have concerns and questions - if not downright nightmares! After all, how will all the work get done once we lose those eight hours?

Well, sorry to disappoint you but I don't have the answers. I do, however, know who does.

Sean Kosofsky, the nonprofit fixer and founder of Mind the Gap Consulting, has written a complete guide to implementing a four-day workweek (4DWW). It has a roadmap, answers to frequently asked questions, and a case study - detailing Sean's experience implementing the 4DWW model.

If you want to jump in right now, just go to - alternatively, stick around - I'm far from done here.

Sean has seen the benefits of a 4DWW first-hand and he believes that this novel approach can improve employee productivity and work-life balance while also increasing retention. So it's a win-win-win (two wins for you, the employer, in case you wanna keep count).

It's no secret that most, if not all of us, are stressed - and worker burnout is skyrocketing. This was, of course, accelerated by the pandemic, social distancing, and hybrid and WFH arrangements. The ‘Great Resignation’ that followed the pandemic really put things into perspective, especially employee retention.

And when that happened, everyone from workers to forward-thinking leaders and advocates started looking for ways to fix the problem. One of the solutions they found is the four-day workweek.

Now you might be thinking "duh", that's how I landed on this blog - but how do we actually make it work?

Well, there's no one-size-fits-all approach, as with most things.

However, Sean Kosofsky does offer guidance to help you get started. He knows that implementing a 4DWW can be scary - because he's been there, done that.

In 2022, Sean successfully led a climate change nonprofit to adopt a four-day workweek - and based on that experience, created a roadmap to help other organizations implement a 4DWW with a clear understanding of the benefits and the challenges.

To start, let's break it down into phases: Assess, Anticipate, Announce, and Adopt. For each of these stages, Sean offers key considerations and documents his experience. For example, did you know that there are different models of a 4DWW you could try?

You could have everyone leave early on Friday - say 1 pm. Many companies are already doing this, especially during the summer months. You could also have each team/department decide which days they want to work on - but probably not the best idea to have each employee pick their days as this could cause communication issues.

Or, if you're not quite sure and don't want to fully commit to a specific day yet, you could occasionally change workdays until you get it right. The one thing you don't want to do, however, is implement ten-hour days. Unsurprisingly, it has proven unpopular, especially among parents.

A way better option is to just go with the more generous model - give everyone the same pay for reduced work hours, while keeping the workload the same. That's what Sean did during the 90-day pilot run... and it worked.

The 4DWW was approved and implemented without any major difficulties. It turned into a huge selling point when hiring, but it did cause minor challenges when promoting part-time workers (30 hours) to full-time employees (32 hours).

Of course, not every organization is the same, people are different, and what worked for Sean's nonprofit may not work for you. But that's ok. You have a roadmap - four clear steps - the rest is up to you.

I do have one last tip for you though; well, Sean does. Before you get started, you should know about the five essential tools that could make your transition to a 4DWW much smoother. Here goes:

✔️ Reduce the number of meetings (you'll be boss of the year, trust me!);

✔️ Have employees work different hours;

✔️ Shift nonessential meetings to Fridays;

✔️ Encourage open discussion about the 4DWW durin

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Created on Jun 12th 2023 09:21. Viewed 121 times.


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