Community Day: Why we give our team a day off every month

Josh Garnham

It’s a universal truth that work gets a lot better when you get on with the people you work with.

It becomes more productive, more creative and, most importantly, more fun (which really doesn’t need a source). Everyone – including employers – wins. It’s a true no-brainer.

So, I’ve never understood why more businesses don’t give their people the time and opportunity to socialise and build relationships inside of work. The status quo is that this instead happens outside of work – typically at the pub – which presents challenges to many different folks for lots of different reasons.

At Monzo, people got a lot more creative with work socials: we had everything from bouldering to board games – but mainly unofficially and always in our own time.

When we started Packfleet, we thought we could take this up a notch – giving people across the company the time and space to do fun and varied things together, but without having to carve out time outside of work for it. 

What quickly became known as ‘Community Day’ is now a once monthly day out for our team. We try to do something different every month, taking advantage of all that London has to offer, and give everyone an opportunity to propose what they want to do.

A recent Community Day trip to see Hamilton!

If someone wants to go pottery painting, they’ll post it in our #community Slack channel and see if others are up for it. The same goes for a bike ride, a museum trip, a West End show – the list is practically endless. And probably the best thing about it is that all four of those activities could happen on the same Community Day. Forced fun is the last thing we want Community Day to be about.

One of the best things about Packfleet’s growth has been seeing our new joiners embrace Community Day, bring new ideas, and find shared interests with others in our community that they perhaps wouldn’t have found otherwise – or definitely not as quickly!

Yes, Packfleet no doubt benefits from Community Day’s success. But the motivation behind it isn’t to supercharge our productivity or growth. It’s fundamentally about giving our team an opportunity to create happy memories together and build good energy.

Spoiler alert: it works!