I'm excited! For decades, Jeremiah 29:11 has been a guiding principle for my entrepreneurial journey. It reads, "I know the thoughts I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope." To me, that means the possibilities are endless, even when things don’t look so good on the outside.

In fact, with the advent of Covid-19, we are seeing new opportunities for our company, our clients, and the world! One of them is the possibility of a four-day workweek.

Andrew Barnes, the author of The 4 Day Week and co-founder of the nonprofit 4 Day Week Global, has emerged as a global ambassador for a four-day workweek. He switched his New Zealand-based firm to that schedule in 2018 and has found it improves productivity and morale. Barnes says,

"By focusing on productivity and output rather than time spent in a workplace, the four-day week allows for better work-life balance, improved employee satisfaction, retention, and mental health."

Productive Environment Institute has helped thousands of people create and maintain SYSTEMs: Saving You Space Time Energy & Money™ to get organized and increase their productivity. We teach nine steps you must address to make a 4-day workweek a reality for you!

1. Assessment Progress starts with the truth. Figure out where you are NOW--How productive are you in your current environment? We have a free Productive Environment Scorecard™ to help you determine that.

2. Tools As my daddy used to say on the farm where I grew up, "Half of any job is having the right tool." He was almost right -- it's actually, "Using the right tool!"

3. Flow Four simple words guide our company: Clutter is postponed decisions®. Decisions determine how things flow into and out of your workspace without becoming a bottleneck (piles of paper, unread emails, and unidentified digital files.)

4. Action Files Many workers need or want to keep paper for active projects. A line in Merchant of Venice reads, "If only to know were to do,” so having a SYSTEM™ to make sure nothing falls through the cracks is essential.

5. Reference Files Despite the promise of the paperless office, for many organizations (especially those that have existed more than five years), going 100% paperless is rarely a reality. In many industries, paper documents are still a requirement. The solution: A "Finding SYSTEM™ " that offers a bridge between paper and digital information so you can find what you need when you need it--and I’m not talking about scanning (although that may be appropriate as well).

6. Digital Files Every organization needs to create and empower team members to utilize SYSTEMs for managing email, hard drives, and cloud-based documents. This is especially important when it comes to collaboration and project management.

7. Time Management Productivity is an art, so identifying time management strategies that match each team member’s preferences and meet work & company objectives is paramount. A calendar or planning process that works for one team member may not work for another. Personal style is important, and I often remind clients that it's not about what you should do, but what you will do.

8. Communication As author Ned Hallowell writes, "The solution to every problem is connection." Implementing best practices for how you communicate with colleagues, prospects, vendors, and clients is critical.

9. Habits As James Clear, author of Atomic Habits, put it so well, "We do not rise to the level of our goals. We fall to the level of our systems." Creating habits and routines to sustain your newly organized workspace is vital.

When you take the time to address these nine steps, you will be in an excellent position to accomplish your work and enjoy your life with a 4-day workweek!

Start by getting your Productive Environment Score™ at https://productiveenvironment.com/pe-gameplan. This will help you determine where you are right now.

Author's Bio: 

In 1978, Barbara took out a $7 ad in a New York City newspaper to advertise her professional organizer business. For 20 years, she focused her business on organizing paper and physical clutter for home offices and organizations. Then the Internet Age came about, and she utilized her principles and expertise to help clients with digital clutter.

Over the past 40+ years Barbara has helped 1000's of companies, and became an icon and top expert in the industry. She has been featured on national media platforms such as Good Morning America, The Today Show and CNN Nightly News. She has also been showcased in publications including USA Today, New York Times, Fast Company, Reader’s Digest, Real Simple and Guideposts.

Barbara and her team teach business owners a 9-step system to go from overwhelmed to optimized. Step 1 is a free Assessment that can be found at https://productiveenvironment.com/pe-gameplan