Four-day workweek not a perfect fit for all

Nick's ESL News Lessons

A printable worksheet for news-based English conversation classes.

Date: 2023/03/20

Difficulty: Intermediate B1

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Vocabulary Match

pilot -   - exhaustion
burnout -   - put into practice
decompress -   - strong
intense -   - relax
ultimately -   - trial
implement -   - finally


A UK pilot of a four-day workweek had positive results, with 92% of participating companies continuing the reduced hours. Employees reported reduced burnout and better well-being.

Alison Dunn, CEO of Citizens Advice in Gateshead, said, "Burnout has been an issue, so the four-day week has given them space to decompress."

However, some businesses faced challenges. Allcap, an engineering company, had issues with scheduling and staffing, ultimately ending the trial early. Other companies found the shortened workweek caused more intense workdays.

For some, a flexible, reduced-hour workweek seemed a better solution. University professor Abigail Marks says a six-hour workday might be better, and the success of the trials shows people are moving away from the usual nine-to-five work schedule.


  1. What were the positive effects reported by employees?
  2. What issues did Allcap face when implementing the four-day workweek?


A: Hey, we're starting the four-day workweek trial next week!
B: I know, but I'm a bit worried about fitting all my work into just four days.
A: Really? I can't wait. I'm going to sit in the garden and catch some rays.
B: Sounds nice, but I'm concerned we'll have to work overtime to get everything done.
A: True, it could get busy around here, but we won't know until we try.
B: You're right. Let's hope it works out for the best, and we can find a good balance.


  1. How would a four-day workweek impact your life? What would you do on your extra day off?
  2. What challenges might businesses face when implementing a four-day workweek?
  3. Do you think that technology will reduce the need for human labor in the future?
  4. What household chores do you have to do? How could you do them less often?

Vocabulary Answers

pilot → trial
burnout → exhaustion
decompress → relax
intense → strong
ultimately → finally
implement → put into practice

Quiz Answers (examples)

  1. They reported reduced burnout and better well-being.
  2. It had issues with scheduling and staffing.

Source Material

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Nick's ESL News Lessons