Microsoft 4-day Workweek Experiment Yields 40% Increase in Productivity

In my own experiments with vacations, I’ve learned that taking time away from work has increased my productivity at work. So I wasn’t surprised when Microsoft announced that their 4-day workweek experiment increased productivity 40%.

Fact: I’ve created almost all of my business innovations while AWAY from my business.

It’ll be interesting to see how Microsoft acts on this empirical evidence from here. Will they switch everyone to a 4-day workweek? Will they make a 4-day workweek policy permanent? Probably not. That would be put a lot of people at risk for ridicule – and corporate business people hate looking weird in front of their peers (for good reason)! “Playing it safe” is modus operandi in Corporate.

Reminds me of how kicking it up the gut, straight at the goalie is likely the best placement during a soccer penalty kick and why nobody ever does it:

the goalies are afraid of looking as if they’re doing nothing — and then missing the ball. Diving to one side, even if it decreases the chance of them catching the ball, makes them appear decisive.

kickers kick the ball right down the middle much less than they should. Or put another way, in practice, kicking it down the middle scores at a higher rate than kicking it either to the left or right (at least in our data set).

Why? If you kick it right down the middle and you don’t score, it is damn embarrassing. So even though the middle is a great play statistically, kickers don’t choose it very often. There are some things that are even more important than winning, like not looking like a fool.

…And how granny style free-throws might be the best way to do it (but nobody does it that way)!

Alas, I’m not holding my breath that Microsoft will implement a 4-day workweek, but a guy can dream, right?

Toby Cryns

Toby Cryns is a freelance CTO and WordPress Guru. He also writes for