TradeMutt, the leading social enterprise workwear company in Australia, has switched to a four-day workweek to encourage better work-life balance among its employees and to set an example for other businesses. The founders of TradeMutt believe that work-life balance plays a vital role in improving mental health and productivity in the workplace, and they want to lead by example to help blue-collar workers and tradies achieve the same.
“Everyone talks about mental health and company culture, but very few people lead by example. We want to be leaders in our field in helping tradies and other blue-collar workers to improve their mental health,” said Ed Ross, co-founder of TradeMutt. “Quality of life plays a big part. If we don’t put our wellbeing first, then we will not be able to achieve long-term social change.”
TradeMutt has maintained the same eight-hour workday and has adopted the principle of “100/80/100,” which means that employees receive 100% of their pay while working 80% of the time but producing 100% of the output. This system allows TradeMutt to work efficiently while giving its employees an extra day to rest and recharge.
“Working four days a week is possible, and we are showing business owners across Australia that it can be done,” said Ross.
TradeMutt’s founders, Daniel Allen and Edward Ross, created the workwear brand in 2015 to start conversations about mental health with colorful and eye-catching shirt designs. They introduced the concept of “Funky Shirt Friday” to encourage tradies to wear their TradeMutt shirts to work and to spark conversations about mental health. The company’s designs have been embraced by iconic companies such as BHP, Rio Tinto, the Brisbane City Council, and Queensland Rail.
TradeMutt donates 50% of its profits directly to TIACS (This Is A Conversation Starter), a free and confidential chat, text, and callback service that provides early-intervention mental health support for truckies, blue-collar workers, and those who care about them.
“Since we implemented the four-day working week, we have noticed a significant improvement in our moods. There is more energy and action in the office, and everyone is a lot happier,” added Ross.
While implementing a four-day workweek requires planning and preparation, TradeMutt encourages other businesses to consider ways to help their employees achieve better work-life balance.
“We strongly encourage workplaces to chat with their staff about how they can help staff to implement a four-day working week. For businesses that require a customer service environment that operates five days per week, staff working days can be staggered,” said Ross.
TradeMutt’s innovative approach to work-life balance and mental health has earned recognition, and its founders were finalists for the 2022 Australian of the Year Qld award.
TradeMutt’s mission to improve the mental health and wellbeing of blue-collar workers and tradies is gaining momentum, and the company’s four-day workweek is just one example of how they are leading the way.