If you emailed all of us today at WHYFOR, half of us would respond with an “Out of Office” message. Okay, maybe fewer, because there’s always those people who forget to turn theirs on.
The point is, we’re half-staff down today. Nobody’s sick. Nobody’s on furlough. Nobody’s on vacation, we think — we’ll check the shared calendar to be sure. Eventually.
We just like Fridays off in the summer. And we don’t wait around for a holiday to give it to us. WHYFOR exercises a Summer Friday policy, which more than half of American companies offer as an employee benefit, according to Business Insider.
It’s pretty amazing. We use our time to sleep in, adventure, run, chill with our family, catch up on Netflix, go to Target or generally….just. not. work.
Research indicates that Summer Fridays, where employees get the whole day or a portion of the day off, boosts morale and improves productivity. And who doesn’t want that? That kind of seems to reflect at least a couple pillars of operational success.
This year, though, it seems more important than ever before. At a time when we’re all working from home, a place we share with bored kids, working spouses, and dogs determined to bark their way into as many conference calls as possible, a little time off the clock is precious.
It’s hard to disconnect when the commute is just a flight of stairs, especially when the avenues of escape we’ve come to rely on are unavailable and (gulp) not really safe right now. And despite the current climate in society, deadlines haven’t disappeared, urgent needs haven’t gone on hiatus and challenges haven’t taken the summer off.
That would have been amazing — any one of those.
So, time is valuable. It always is, but particularly right now. Time to not work on a day we usually do — it offers a bit of mental freedom that has been hard to come by in recent months.
That, and WHYFOR believes it’s just good practice to acknowledge hard work.