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WORLD’S LARGEST TRIAL IN THE UK: 86 PERCENT WANT TO KEEP 4-DAY WEEK…

The world’s largest trial of a 4-day week in the UK has got off to a successful start and is already showing very positive results. So positive, in fact, that 86 percent of the companies surveyed are considering retaining the reduction in working hours with full pay after the trial phase. Back in the summer, CNN Business checked with employees and participating companies: The new daily routine is “phenomenal”.

Since June 2022, 3,300 employees in 70 companies and organizations in the United Kingdom have been working 80 percent of their normal working hours and receiving full pay. The trial is one of a number of experiments investigating the effects of shorter working hours. For example, the biggest trial to date of a 4-day week in Iceland was an overwhelming success. Field trials also started in Ireland or Scotland. CNN Business checked in with the participating British companies in early August and found similar success: The majority of employees want to keep the reduced working hours even after the end of the test phase. This is because employees are already feeling the benefits after the past eight weeks, or as one participant in the trial describes it:

“THE FIVE-DAY WEEK IS A 20TH CENTURY CONCEPT THAT IS NO LONGER SUITABLE FOR THE 21ST CENTURY.”

Now, a survey conducted by 4-Day-Week-Global confirms this: 86 percent of the companies that took part in the survey (41 companies) are considering keeping the shorter working hours after the test phase. For 88 percent, the new model is working “well” and 95 percent said productivity has remained the same or improved.

UK 4-day week trial: Work shorter hours for the same salary

The trial is organized by 4-Day-Week-Global, together with the think tank “Autonomy”. Researchers from the universities of Cambridge, Oxford, and Boston College are accompanying the field trial. They are studying the impact of shorter working hours on productivity, employee well-being, the environment and gender equality. Employees are expected to follow the “100:80:100 model.” They receive 100 percent of the pay for 80 percent of the time. In return, they are expected to try to maintain 100 percent productivity. The trial is to run from June to November, when companies can decide whether to stick with the new working hours model or return to longer hours.

The companies are very diverse, both in terms of size and fields of activity. These range, for example, from education, IT and online retail to automotive supply services, skin care and the hospitality industry.

“ESSENTIALLY, THEY ARE LAYING THE GROUNDWORK FOR THE FUTURE OF WORK BY PUTTING THE FOUR-DAY WORKWEEK INTO PRACTICE IN COMPANIES OF ALL SIZES AND NEARLY EVERY INDUSTRY, TELLING US EXACTLY WHAT THEY ARE FINDING IN THE PROCESS,” SAYS JOE O’CONNOR, CEO OF 4 DAY WEEK GLOBAL OF THE SURVEY RESULTS.

The new daily routine is “phenomenal”

After the first eight weeks, CNN Business checked in with several companies and learned from some employees that they are already “feeling happier, healthier and doing their jobs better.” Lisa Gilbert, a manager at a credit provider, for example, describes the new routine to CNN Business as “phenomenal” and “life-changing.” She says she can really enjoy the weekend because she can now use Fridays to get housework or other obligations done – without feeling guilty. 

Other respondents say the extra day made it possible to “pursue new hobbies, fulfil long-standing ambitions or simply invest more time in their relationships,” according to CNN Business. While some employees used the time to take cooking classes or piano lessons, others went fishing, exercised or devoted themselves to volunteer work. For example, Mark Howland, marketing and communications director at a charity bank, told the online magazine:

“ON MY DAY OFF, I’D GO FOR PRETTY LONG BIKE RIDES, TAKE CARE OF MYSELF, TAKE TIME OFF, AND THEN HAVE THE WHOLE WEEKEND TO DO THINGS AROUND THE HOUSE AND SPEND TIME WITH FAMILY.”

From a corporate balance sheet perspective, the shorter hours also have benefits. For example, Claire Daniels, CEO of Trio Media, said in the 4-Day-Week-Global survey:

“THE FOUR-DAY TRIAL WEEK HAS BEEN EXTREMELY SUCCESSFUL FOR US SO FAR. PRODUCTIVITY HAS REMAINED HIGH, WITH AN INCREASE IN WELL-BEING FOR THE TEAM, ALONG WITH A 44% IMPROVEMENT IN OUR COMPANY’S FINANCIAL PERFORMANCE.”

Shorter meetings, more concentrated work

The changeover was not smooth everywhere. At one London PR agency, it was even “really chaotic,” as Managing Director Samantha Losey recounts. But after two weeks, her team has developed successful methods to achieve the same results in the shorter time available. These include shorter meetings and periods for more focused work. She expects 75 percent of the company will be able to maintain productivity over the course of the six-month experiment – allowing them to keep the four-day work week.

“THE TEAM IS FIGHTING INCREDIBLY HARD FOR THIS SO FAR,” SHE SAYS.

According to the 4-Day-Week-Global survey, the transition was smooth for 78 percent of companies and a major challenge for only 2 percent. Nicci Russell, managing director of Waterwise, for example, said, “It wasn’t a walk in the park at first, but no big change ever is, and we were well briefed and prepared by the 4-Day-Week-Global team. We’ve all had to work at it—some weeks are easier than others, and things like annual leave can make it harder to fit everything in—but we’re much happier with it now overall than when we started.”

This finding is also consistent with the evaluation in the Icelandic experiment. There, it was also shown that the most effective methods were very specifically adapted to the respective workplace: for example, fewer or shorter meetings or a better distribution of tasks between the staff members. The nursing staff changed shift patterns and some offices closed earlier on Fridays because there was less to do.

Author Kontrast.at

Source: Scoop Me Kontrast.at

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MY POSITIVE COVID-19 TEST RESULT & NUMEROUS NEGATIVE RESULTS BEFORE IT…

So, basically, the only way we truly know if we have contracted Covid-19 is by doing a Rapid Antigen Test but how come you can start with the symptoms and yet not test positive for a few days?

I started feeling really rough 4 evenings ago. The muscle aches and pains seemed to zoom straight into my spine and all my muscles throughout my body. It was so bad that it kept me awake for most of the night and when my other half woke up the following morning I told him I MUST have Covid as I felt so awful.

I took the test which came up negative but I continued throughout the day to show all the usual symptoms of Covid-19. I carried on taking my painkillers which did not even touch the sides of the pain and slowly went downhill all day.

I went to bed early but the discomfort and cough woke me up yet again. I was sure the test the following morning had to be positive but yet again it was showing negative. I told my daughter that it had to be flu if it wasn’t Covid-19 as so many of the symptoms were similar and I just carried on taking my usual medications throughout the day.

By the evening of Day 3 I felt like I had just about everything on the symptom list for Covid-19 but tried to convince myself it had to be flu. I had a Covid-19 booster and Flu jab booked for the following day which I cancelled in case my next test came up positive.

I’d had yet another awful night on Day 3 and I was just beginning to wonder if I was imagining all this so I took another test on Day 4. This time it came up positive.

According to I NewsIt is believed people are at their most infectious one to two days before the onset of symptoms, and during the two to three days afterwards.

This means that whoever I was with one to two days before my symptoms started could pick up this virus from me as well as during the two to three days after the symptoms have started so the test I did would have made no difference whatsoever to whom I have mixed with over the last 7 days.

I now have to isolate for 5 days even though the most infectious days have well passed the sell-by date.

The NHS website now says that you should –

Try to stay at home and avoid contact with other people if you:

  • have any symptoms of COVID-19, and have a high temperature or you do not feel well enough to go to work or do your normal activities
  • have tested positive for COVID-19 – this means it’s very likely you have the virus

If you have COVID-19, you can pass on the virus to other people for up to 10 days from when your infection starts. Many people will no longer be infectious to others after 5 days.

You should:

  • try to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for 5 days
  • avoiding meeting people at higher risk from COVID-19 for 10 days, especially if their immune system means they’re at higher risk of serious illness from COVID-19, even if they’ve had a COVID-19 vaccine

This starts from the day after you did the test.

They also suggest that you follow the same procedure if you are feeling unwell but did not test positive or test negative for Covid-19.

Different websites state different ways to deal with Covid-19 if you test positive. The Imperial College of London noting that ‘While there is no longer a legal requirement to self-isolate if you test positive for COVID-19, many people still want to isolate until they are not infectious.’

The National Heart & Lung Institute writes “Based on our findings, we recommend that people with COVID-19 isolate for five days after symptoms begin, then use lateral flow tests to safely leave isolation.”Dr Seran Hakki National Heart & Lung Institute

Some people say that Rapid antigen tests have lower accuracy than PCR tests, and while they have been (and continue to be) a vital part of the response to the disease, they are prone to mistakes.

I will now have to wait another 28 days before I get my Covid-19 booster.

Source: I News, NHS Imperial Collect of London National Heart & Lung Institute Mirror

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5 Habits That Help Your Mental Health

Lifestyle And Mental Health Mental health is something that has become more openly talked about in the recent years. Although it can still be more of…

5 Habits That Help Your Mental Health