A couple of weeks ago we announced the start of the ironWeekend Initiative. Starting in June, ironSource employees will get a few, fully-paid, long weekends where we’ll shut the Tel Aviv offices entirely, so that they have extra time to go to the bank or the beach, spend time with their families, or just relax.
We’ve implemented this change because employee welfare for us goes beyond offering the perks that every tech company today offers. It’s about having a philosophy of work, and sticking to it.
Below is an excerpt of a letter I sent to our employees about this initiative, explaining my reasoning behind the new change and what I hope to see it accomplish. (A note for global readers — we’re closing the office on Sundays because in Israel we work Sunday-Thursday instead of Monday-Friday)
My philosophy of work is based on a belief that the number of hours we spend in the office are not necessarily in direct correlation to our productivity, or more importantly — to our creativity and our ability to have great ideas or come up with innovative solutions.
I believe that if people are able to unplug from the day-to-day of work, productivity and creativity will increase, and that we will be able to track and measure this increase. As this new initiative comes into effect, we will be measuring productivity across a range of parameters to see if I’m right.
People have worked 9–5 for 5 days a week because, once upon a time, work could only be done from within the office, and often, in daylight. That’s no longer the case, and I believe we have to shift the working model to fit our new reality. Just because it’s possible to work all the time from anywhere, doesn’t mean we should.
But that’s easy to say, and much harder to do. That’s why we’ve decided to launch the ironWeekend initiative, closing the entire Israel office for a few extra Sundays a year to give employees a helping hand in balancing work and life. We are serious about helping people create a better work-life balance, and that’s why we’re committing company time and money to ensure that each of you is empowered to do that.
Ideally we would have been able to wait for the Israeli government to take the initiative, but we’ve seen that process stall, and we don’t know when and if this change will happen on a national level. I don’t believe we should have to wait for someone else to make the right decision for us. That’s why we’re moving forward with this change, and in doing so, setting an example for the whole industry.
My goal is for us to lead a change that I believe is justified for everyone in Israel. My hope for the ironWeekend initiative is that we will encourage other companies in the Israeli high-tech ecosystem to do the same thing, and that together we will be able to nudge the government towards enacting this change on a national scale.
I truly believe that our greatest strength and asset at ironSource is our employees, and the passion and commitment each of you brings to the work. The better we are at helping you live more balanced lives, the stronger a company we’ll be able to grow together.