Do We All Need 40 Hour Weeks to Do Our Jobs?

Radio Interview for CBC News on Four-Day Workweek. The interview was conducted in English and released in 2021.

CBC News

In our society, we are conditioned to believe that hard work is the only way to be successful. This is true for many people, but not necessarily for everyone.

The traditional work week (i.e. Monday through Friday, 9am to 5pm) has been our way of life for the last 100 years. We are so much more productive today than we were 100 years ago, but we still work the same hours. What if we decided to work fewer hours?

Iceland recently conducted a major experiment with a four-day workweek that yielded tremendous results in productivity and morale. Iceland is a small country with a population of about 350,000, so the experiment is easier than in larger countries. But we can still learn lessons from this experiment.

Indeed, there is ample evidence that working less leads to better performance at work and a happier life outside of work.

CBC Radio invited me to talk about this topic on several of their radio stations across Canada. I gave interviews between 6AM and 9AM Eastern on the shows listed below. I link to the recording posted by Labrador Morning.

  • MONTREAL – Daybreak
  • TORONTO – Metro Morning
  • QUEBEC CITY – Quebec AM
  • SUDBURY – Morning North
  • LONDON – London Morning
  • NEWFOUNDLAND – Newfoundland Morning
  • YELLOWKNIFE – The Trailbreaker
  • GOOSE BAY (LABRADOR) – Labrador Morning
  • VANCOUVER – The Early Edition
  • REGINA – The Morning Edition
  • KELOWNA – Daybreak South
  • KAMLOOPS – Daybreak Kamloops

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About Me

JN Reyt

I am an associate professor of organizational behavior at McGill University's Desautels Faculty of Management, where I conduct research on the future of work and conflict resolution in the workplace.

I teach organizational behavior and negotiation at all academic levels. I also lead negotiation workshops for corporations and work one-on-one with managers as a negotiation coach.

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