A firm in the county has announced it will move to a four-day week while staff still receive full pay.

Lemongrass Marketing, a PR and content marketing agency for travel brands, announced it will trial the new work model from September 1.

The Bicester-based company will follow the 100:80:100 model during the trial, where staff get 100 per cent pay for 80 per cent of the time, in exchange for a commitment to maintain 100 per cent productivity.

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Simply put, the team at Lemongrass will get paid for five days but work only four.

Oxford Mail: Mirjam Peternek McCartney, founder and CEO of Lemongrass MarketingMirjam Peternek McCartney, founder and CEO of Lemongrass Marketing

Mirjam Peternek McCartney, founder and CEO of Lemongrass Marketing, said: “We know that studies have shown that happier, healthier staff are more productive and more creative.

“PR is a creative industry and you only come up with good ideas when you have headspace, so this will ultimately benefit our clients, while ensuring that they receive the same service levels and great results. We have devised a system of alternate shift patterns Monday - Friday to maintain full team productivity and output.

“We have all been though the most immense pressures in the last few years and as a business working in the travel industry it hit us hard, but we emerged stronger.

“We couldn’t have done it without the resilience and support of our dedicated team who went above and beyond. We are passionate about being a forward thinking, values-driven business and investing in and maintaining staff wellbeing and satisfaction.

“We strongly believe that this approach will be the future of work and look forward to trialling the initiative.”

The trial period will run for four months, during which time the company will evaluate client happiness and staff wellbeing as well as business efficiency and productivity on a weekly basis.

The CEO added: “As an industry, we can't wait for positive change to come from government. Instead, we want to lead the charge from the front, collaboratively.

“Hopefully, more SMEs like us at Lemongrass will see the positive impact that this operational approach can have across all areas of the business and decide to make the change, for the good of their people and their business.”

Oxford Mail: Abi Best, managing partner at Lemongrass MarketingAbi Best, managing partner at Lemongrass Marketing

Abi Best, managing partner at Lemongrass Marketing, said: “We are on our journey to becoming a B Corp, and offering a 4-day week is part and parcel of this sustainable approach, making sure we look after our people as well as our planet.

“Having a day off per week means that staff can use the time to volunteer, do community work, care for elderly relatives, or just pursue a hobby.”


Read more from this author

This story was written by Sophie Perry. She joined the team in 2021 as a digital reporter.

You can get in touch with her by emailing: sophie.perry@newsquest.co.uk

Follow her on Twitter @itssophieperry

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