Flibco Leads With A 4-Day Workweek

Tobias Stüber, CEO of Flibco (Photo © Flibco)

Flibco, a Luxembourg-based transportation company, leads the charge by implementing a four-day workweek. Flibco’s HR strategy has seen remarkable impacts on both employees and business outcomes.

The story of Flibco‘s journey towards innovation in HR can be traced back to CEO Tobias Stüber’s personal experience as an 18-year-old intern in Germany. “In an internship at a young age, I saw first-hand that a minimum of 30% of the time, people were not really working in their offices,” said Tobias Stüber, CEO of Flibco. Witnessing inefficiencies and disengagement among employees in a traditional work environment ignited a spark within him to revolutionize the way companies operate.

“During my first internship in Germany, my last interview was with the CEO of the company, and he asked me where I wanted to be in 20 years. I asked him to step out of the room, and when he walked in I was in his seat. I said I want to be here,” said Stüber. Fast forward to five years ago when Tobias Stüber assumed leadership at Flibco, armed with a vision for change and a commitment to employee well-being.

The transition to a four-day workweek 

At the heart of Flibco’s new HR strategy lies the implementation of a four-day workweek, a concept previously unheard of, as an implementation, in Luxembourg. However, this wasn’t a rash decision made overnight. It was the culmination of a meticulous change management process, guided by a clear vision and unwavering dedication. 

“When I observed employees, I said to myself, something has to be changed in the working culture, because it’s not working,” said Stüber.

Flibco transitioned gradually, moving from a traditional nine-to-five model to a flexible working arrangement while maintaining 80% work time, 100% salary, and striving for 100% efficiency. “It’s a long transition process, I would never give this advice to a company to implement this overnight, it’s a trial and error process, and that’s the key message,” said Stüber.

But why a four-day workweek, and how does it translate into tangible benefits for employees and the company alike? “When employees are happy and are running on their own, you can give them responsibility, along with freedom,” said Stüber. At the core of this strategy lies a fundamental belief: happy employees lead to business success. 

“We listened, and the biggest issue in today’s workforce is burnout. We are looking for sustainable success at Flibco, and our people work hard with a balance, and this will be long-term”

Tobias Stüber, CEO of Flibco

Tangible benefits 

By granting employees more autonomy and responsibility, Flibco fosters a culture of trust and empowerment.”I observed that with a five-day work week, a lot of time was wasted, so why waste when it’s about results,” said Stüber. This newfound freedom allows employees to work smarter, not just harder, resulting in increased productivity and innovation.

“While people may say with this model that our results would go down, but no they went up. We measured our results with the typical KPI’s, but further implemented, with duration of meeting, for example, or project completion times. All of these have improved.” said Stüber. Measuring the success of this innovative HR strategy isn’t just about financial metrics. 

While Flibco’s revenue has seen exponential growth, it’s the qualitative improvements in employee well-being that truly underscore the effectiveness of their approach. “We found that our employees reported back saying that they didn’t need as many holidays with this model, because their well-being was above all, and they were happy to come to work. Sick leave now is close to zero,” said Stüber. Reduced sick leave, shorter meeting durations, and heightened employee engagement are just a few indicators of the positive impact felt throughout the organization.

Fostering a culture of trust

Moreover, Flibco’s commitment to agility extends beyond its internal operations, with an international work culture. “We have more than ten different nationalities, and we cater to our team accordingly,” said Stüber. With a diverse workforce spanning multiple nationalities, the company remains ready to adapt to ever-changing market dynamics. 

While the specifics of their growth trajectory may be closely guarded, their commitment to sustainable success is unwavering.

Looking ahead, Flibco’s journey is far from over. As they continue to scale and expand their operations, the focus remains on maintaining their core values of innovation, efficiency, and employee well-being. “We listened, and the biggest issue in today’s workforce is burnout. We are looking for sustainable success at Flibco, and our people work hard with a balance, and this will be long-term” said Stüber. 

Agility is a strategy that ensures staying ahead of the curve in a rapidly evolving industry. Critics of this management strategy may point out that employees must work hard to be efficient and avoid a crisis from occurring. “I agree that we have to work hard, but there is one point, we have to work hard and smart,” said Stüber. 

Flibco’s story is not just about adapting to change, it’s about shaping the future of the businesses. “Staying agile means being able to adjust to market needs. We are international, and with our spirit and company culture, we are able to adapt, and we hope that other players will do the same,” said Stüber. 

Editor’s note: This article first appeared on Forbes Luxembourg here.

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