Treat Your Staff Like Adults and See What Happens

I’m attending the Carsonified seminar Future of Web Design later this week and popped over to their (lovely) site to check some details; I noticed “We’re hiring!” on the homepage and thought I’d have a look.

Now I knew that Carsonified has a four day work week, but was hugely impressed by the other benefits their staff receive:

4-Day work week
It’s not a typo :) The whole office is closed on Fridays, so every weekend is a 3-day holiday. We still pay you a full salary and give you 35 days holiday.

Your very own iPhone, 23″ Cinema Display, Aeron Chair and MacBook Pro
Working at Carsonified isn’t just a job – it’s a lifestyle. We want you to love working here, so we provide you with some of the best kit in the industry.

Idea Week – A full week of madness
Occasionally we turn off our email, shut down our machines, and let the creative ideas flow. For the first ever Carsonified Idea Week we came up with – it was a blast :)

So not only do they work 4 days a week and get 35 days holiday, they also are given the best tools there are to do their jobs and the whole company takes a week off to stimulate creativity and working together.


So do you think that the team at Carsonified feel valued? I bet they do.

Do you think they feel trusted and empowered? Hell yeah.

Do you think they work hard and create great events and applications? Uh huh…

I’ve worked in a number of massive corporations that should, in theory, find it easier than Carsonfied to treat their staff as valued assets to the company, but you know what they just don’t. I’ve worked for companies that appear to view their staff as little more than a necessary evil to be tolerated and limited rather than inspired and allowed to create.

I was then struck by this quote from Maverick: The Success Behind the World’s Most Unusual Workplace by Ricardo Semler over at Signal vs. Noise

We simply do not believe our employees have an interest in coming in late, leaving early, and doing as little as possible for as much money as their union can wheedle out of us. After all, these are the same people that raise children, join the PTA, elect mayors, governors, senators, and presidents. They are adults. At Semco, we treat them like adults. We trust them. We don’t make our employees ask permission to go to the bathroom, nor have security guards search them as they leave for the day. We get out of their way and let them do their jobs.

Another enlightened approach to working and to staffing your business.

It seems that 37Signals also now have a four day work week and a cool set of benefits for their staff.

My company may never employ people, but if it does Carsonified and 37Signals are the benchmark that I’ll be aiming for.