How to pitch a 4-day work week to your boss


Anna Baluch

Anna Baluch

Blog author Anna Baluch

Anna Baluch is a freelance personal finance writer who enjoys writing about personal finance topics including mortgages, retirement, insurance, and investing. Her work can be seen on LendingTree, Business Insider, Experian and other well-known publications. Anna lives in a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio and holds a bachelor’s degree in marketing. You can contact her on LinkedIn.

Published|3 min read

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The standard work week for full-time employees is eight hours per day, five days a week. Recently, there have been countless reports suggesting four-day work weeks offer several benefits. When employees work four days, they tend to be less stressed, more productive, happier, and healthier.

So what is a four-day work week like? You can expect to work 10 hours per day for four days. So that could mean working from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. or 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.. You’ll get the weekend off as well as another day during the week. While the extra day doesn’t have to be a Monday or Friday, you may prefer this.

If you like the idea of a four-day work week and believe it would make you a better employee, here are some ways you can pitch it to your boss.

1. Schedule a meeting in advance

Requesting to change your work week is serious. Schedule a meeting with your boss in advance and let them know what you’d like to discuss. If you randomly show up to their office and start pitching a four-day work week, they’ll be less likely to take you seriously and accept your request.

2. Explain why a shorter work week would be mutually beneficial

Your boss may be open to the idea of a four-day work week if they understand how it can benefit you both. Clearly explain how it would make you a happier, more productive employee. Be sure to keep the discussion positive and focus on how a new schedule can help you and the company achieve its goals. It’s also a good idea to share some studies that prove the benefits of the four-day work week, especially if your boss is not familiar with it.

3. Propose a testing period

If your boss has never approved a four-day work week before, they may be hesitant to let you proceed with this type of schedule. But, if you propose a three-month test period where you work four-days per week, they may be more receptive to the idea. Tell them that you can meet after at the end of the testing period and discuss whether or not your new schedule should become a permanent change.

4. Make a smooth transition

If your boss agrees to a four-day work week, do everything you can to make the transition as seamless as possible. Take the same day off each week and block it off on your calendar so everyone else knows when you will and won’t be working. If a colleague invites you to a meeting on your day off, ask them if they can reschedule to a day you’ll be in the office.

5. Think of alternative solutions

Your boss may not accept a four-day work week. If this happens, brainstorm other options you’d be happy with. You could ask them if working remotely once or twice a week is an option. Or coming to work earlier so that you can make it home before rush hour traffic hits.

The key is getting creative and thinking about alternative schedules your boss may prefer over a four-day work week. Just because they don’t approve a shorter work week doesn’t mean they’re not open to other ideas.

If you’re thinking about making more boss moves at work, here’s our guide to asking for a raise.

Image: Nastia Kobzarenko