Tomorrow is the start of our Clayton’s Gift Day. I’d never heard of a ‘Clayton’s’ before but Pauline dubbed our 5th day a Clayton’s day in our team meeting and explained that a ‘Clayton’s was a type of non-alcoholic whisky and became slang for something that was not real. Let me explain how that applies to our 5th day …
The team is committed and keen on the idea of the 4 day week. We are also very definite in knowing that there are some things that we can’t let slip ( beyond just productivity). The two big ones were connectivity within our team and service to clients. To make sure that we don’t lose either of those, we need to go into a 4 day week confident that our assets (our templates, work flows, systems etc) are powerful enough to make sure that we can deliver the same standard of service to our clients and still be there to support each other in the team – all within 4 days.
It sounds like a big ask. But if there is any team that can do it, I believe ours can. It feels like everything we have been working towards, training for, developing towards has somehow led us to being able to challenge ourselves to do this.
We’ve long focused on building assets and efficiencies, we’ve always believed in flexibility, and having more than one consultant across each client was done because it was just smart business practice. All of these things were unknowingly gearing us up for being able to implement a 4 day week long before Alistair first waved the idea under our noses.
And so the next three months is our final drive, the final training session, our time-trial so to speak. From August to October we are taking a ‘Clayton’s Gift Day’ – the 5th day in the week for each of our full-timers will be working but not available. Our focus on that fifth day is anything and everything needed to build our service capacity, productivity, and efficiency so that when we take the fifth Gift Day for real, we’ve already proven to ourselves that it can be done.
We will also be using that time to iron out any glitches to make sure that our support and connectivity with each other and our service to clients will be sustained.
Like I said – not easy, but I believe in this team!