Life during the Pandemic has been impacted in so many ways, from the unbearable grief suffered by those that have lost loved ones, friends, and colleagues, to the millions of people who have and are still suffering from mental health and wellbeing issues. Whilst very few of us will forget the pain and anguish that so many have suffered, as a society and as human beings there are many lessons to be learned; these include the need to address deep rooted behaviours, some of which have simply been tolerated because “it’s what we do” for far too long. In the last 10-15 years it has become more acceptable to challenge the lack of work/life balance, we have even seen some previously unheard-of scenarios unfold, where extremely successful entrepreneurs and business people have actually walked away from their corporate life, to live a more fulfilling, family oriented and less stressful existence. The reality, of course, is that this is still incredibly rare. Whilst I am not advocating that we all walk away from our jobs, what I am saying is that we need to take time to consider some of the antiquated beliefs that add little or nothing to our lives and indeed, in many cases have caused needless stress and unhappiness over many years. Most of us will have seen firsthand the number of “ambitious” individuals that needlessly work way beyond their contracted hours, just to be seen in the office “still there, above and beyond”, but why, what are they achieving? Trials have shown that productivity can actually be increased by shortening the working week; in Iceland such a trial demonstrated an increase to productivity by reducing the working week from 5 to 4 days. In certain conditions, this makes absolute sense, with a more focused, driven workforce delivering an enhanced output; the additional day-off as recognition, will stimulate the workforce, whereas being forced to work a further day just to see out the traditional working week makes little or no sense. If you consider the standard Monday to Friday model, how many businesses could demonstrate comparable productivity on a Friday versus the other weekdays, very few if any I suggest. As a result of the Icelandic trials, 86% of their workforce either work, or have the right to work a shorter week. Is this really such an ignominious thing to do or is it just a case of certain people being unwilling to accept fact and the need to work harder in a shorter week. Inevitably there will be those that feel it could tip the balance the wrong way, with the 4-day week simply being unsuitable for perfectly valid reasons, and it may be for some. However, for those that can demonstrate that it is a sensible and viable way forward, why not try it. The potential lifestyle improvements for many are beyond argument, but I think we must accept that this model simply won’t fit every industry or sector; my overarching point is that it would suit some and we should not avoid trialling it simply because we don’t want to be perceived as lacking commitment or being lazy in some pointless nod to the past. Change can be a very positive force and let’s face facts, what right minded person wouldn’t enjoy more time with their family and friends if it were achievable. It's somewhat late for my generation to benefit from this type of major adjustment to working hours, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t seek a better work-life balance for future generations. At getITright we firmly believe that the world of Agile development is entirely suited to this approach and indeed, we are planning to implement it as part of our Business Plan going forward. #Lockdownlessons