What if you only had a 5-hour workday? But that’s not what we’re taught here in the United States, right? But what if… just what if you could get all your work done in 5 hours each day so that you could spend the rest of your day just chillin’ like a villain. Who wouldn’t want that?
My guest today, Stephan Aarstol, is doing exactly that with his company while achieving massive success. Work smarter, not harder.
Stephan is the Founder and CEO of Tower Paddle Boards, a beach lifestyle company. Two years after its creation in 2010, they were on ABC Shark Tank where he got an investment from Mark Cuban, actually being one of his best investments from the show when he invested $100,000 in lifetime sales. Since then, they’ve done over $20M – wow! and moving on to become one of the fastest growing companies in the US.
About a year and a half ago, Stephen has moved their company over to a five-hour work day. Did this compromise the company’s growth? Apparently, no. Their revenues ironically grew 42% the first year of doing it.
Stephen is the author of the book The Five-Hour Workday: Live Differently, Unlock Productivity, and Find Happiness.
Here are the highlights of my conversation with Stephan:
Understanding the 8-hour workday history:
- Working back in the days was a curse
- 1600’s – Religious institutions creating the mindset that you need to work to produce stuff
- American settlers came to get shift into the entrepreneur lifestyle
- Today, work in the US has become one-dimensional
- 8-hour workday invented by Henry Ford in early 1900’s as a response to the industrial revolution and as a recruitment and retention strategy (prior to that, Americans worked 10-16 hours a day in factories)
Fast forward to today….
We’re still working 8 hours a day when that concept was actually invented for factory workers a hundred years ago. People are sedentary at the desk for even 10-12 hours a day resulting to health issues.
We need a reset.
Stephan has decided to take his 10-million company into a 8-hour workday. Going faster, working less, and improving their quality of life 10X!
Daily Time Pressure + Increased Productivity = Better Lifestyle
The average knowledge worker in America gets 2-3 hours of real work done. Change work from being managed by time to being managed by productivity. Then you can put time pressure on your team. Employees then force themselves to work faster because they will be expected to do the same amount of work done or else they’re going to be fired.
People will then creatively think how to work faster and eliminate distractions.
This forces people to identify productivity tools. (Visit www.fivehourworkday.com and get the first 50 pages of the book for free as a download to know about some productivity tools)
Working to Live NOT Living to Work
- Different countries have different work lifestyles: America’s response versus other countries (Germany is clearly getting this!)
- Breaking the mindset of working more to be more successful
- It’s all about productivity – shrink the day and make people more productivity
- Happiness is the new productivity tool.
- The point of life is not work: 70%-80% of people in America are dissatisfied with their job and consider work as work
- The reason we work is to improve our quality of life
- Moving from a mindset of scarcity to a mindset of abundance
Child happiness in the US ranked 26th (out of the top 29 industrialized countries in the world) – why are kids unhappy? Parents are working too much.
Reset how you go about maximizing quality of life.
Stephan’s Major Takeaway:
Have an open mind about the five-hour workday. Doing this could win you on both fronts – the quality of life and increasing productivity. There is a way you can have both. It seems counterintuitive but the world has completely changed in the last 3-4 years. We need new ways to work.
Connect with Stephan on Twitter @stephanaarstol twitter
Stephan’s book The Five-Hour Workday: Live Differently, Unlock Productivity, and Find Happiness
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