Why a healthy work/life balance is important for creativity

Dan Hinton


Our Founder, Dan Hinton talks through his take on the importance of a healthy work/life balance and how we build this into how we operate as an agency.

I’ve always been a strong proponent for a healthy work/life balance. Seeing real value in looking after the mental wellbeing of not only myself but the team around me. As a business that deals in the currency of creativity, it’s important to give ourselves the space to think, process and even get bored at times!

It’s because of this, that from the start of this year (2022) we have shifted to a 4.5 day week, full pay and an additional Company wide, summer week off.

Some of you may recall that we trialed a 4 day week for a month last summer. On the whole it went without any hitches but I must confess to not enjoying it as much as I assumed I would. Although nothing fell over, I couldn’t help but feel like I was falling behind. But I wasn’t.

So 4.5 days feels like the perfect compromise. We’re using Friday as the default day to have a play with. We all have the option to effectively take two Fridays off a month, working the other two, or a choice of working half-day Fridays instead.

For me, it’s all about having that flexibility and choice.

Working less is often more productive

There have been numerous studies into the productivity of workers during a typical day and week. I’ve recently finished reading the book ‘Stolen Focus: Why You Can’t Pay Attention‘ by Johann Hari. In the book, one particular piece of information struck me..

In a typical 8 hour day, only 3 of those on average are focussed and productive. So to get the same output, if you’re moving from a 5 day week to a 4, would mean only needing to find an extra 45 minutes of focused work in each of those 4 days.

When business owner, Andrew Barnes experimented with this in his New Zealand based business, he found the employee productivity went up 30% in comparison to when they were working 5 days a week.

It’s a simple question really. If you are a sports fan, would you want your team to go out to compete, tired and over worked? Of course not. You want them to be rested and fully fit, ready to do their best work. The same applies to us in a working day and week.

We’ll never create our best designs or code if we’re over stretched, tired and demotivated.

When I think of the importance of sustainability in what we do, then for true sustainability for ourselves, we need to give ourselves more flexibility in the workplace.