Workstyle Book Summary - Workstyle Book explained in key points
Listen to the Intro

Workstyle summary

Lizzie Penny and Alex Hirst

A revolution for wellbeing, productivity and society

3.8 (222 ratings)
21 mins

Brief summary

Workstyle by Lizzie Penny and Alex Hirst is a guide for designing a workstyle that suits your unique needs by considering your personality, values, and skills. It encourages readers to think about work as a way to fulfill their individual goals rather than just as a means to an end.

Table of Contents

    Summary of 4 key ideas

    Audio & text in the Blinkist app
    Key idea 1 of 4

    Workstyle – the idea

    Work is an integral part of life. For most of us, it takes up about a third of our time, and forms a pretty significant part of our identity. But the way most of us work – sitting in an office morning ’til evening, interacting with the same coworkers – is based on an age-old tradition. It came into existence with the industrial revolution about 200 years ago. The truth is, this way of working is outdated and unnecessary.

    An aging workforce, recent technological advances, and a shift towards more independent working has set the scene for us to fundamentally change the way we think about work. This is where workstyle comes in.

    Just like your lifestyle refers to the way you live your life, your workstyle is the freedom to choose when and where you work. It’s based on three principles.

    • Firstly, asynchronous working. This basically means that you do not have to be working at the same time as your colleagues. Maybe you stop working just as your colleague on the other side of the planet wakes up to pick up where you left off.
    • This is made possible by the second principle: digital-first. Everybody works with a computer these days, Wi-Fi is ubiquitous, and recent events have shown that a lot of our work can exist in a digital space. Software like Slack can be our office space. Let’s embrace it.
    • Finally, workstyle relies on a trust-based environment. You need to believe that your coworkers are going to deliver without a boss looking over their shoulder.

    Working the workstyle way results in an exciting shift in focus when compared to traditional work. It takes the power to dictate the working day away from the companies and puts it in the hands of the people.

    Instead of measuring an employee’s value by the hours they spend in their seat, in front of their computer, it becomes about the outputs they produce, regardless of when or where they do the work. Without the need to share hours and locations with coworkers, people have the freedom to work in the ways that work for them. This idea of autonomy has huge implications for the nature and impact of the work we do.

    In the following sections you will see just how much workstyle can improve your wellbeing, and in turn your productivity. But first you need to prepare for the fundamental shift in understanding that workstyle requires. 

    Say the word “workstyle” out loud to yourself, or perhaps the cat. How does it feel? Let yourself imagine a world where that word is commonly understood by those around you. Then, describe your current workstyle, starting with “my workstyle is …”. Think about the days and hours you work, when you take breaks and holidays, and the aspects of your life that you fit your work around – picking up kids, chores, hobbies. Chances are you don’t have much control over the specifics of your current workstyle. That’s why it’s time to take a look at the benefits of a world where you do.

    Want to see all full key ideas from Workstyle?

    Key ideas in Workstyle

    More knowledge in less time
    Read or listen
    Read or listen
    Get the key ideas from nonfiction bestsellers in minutes, not hours.
    Find your next read
    Find your next read
    Get book lists curated by experts and personalized recommendations.
    Shortcasts New
    We’ve teamed up with podcast creators to bring you key insights from podcasts.

    What is Workstyle about?

    Workstyle: A revolution for wellbeing, productivity and society (2022) introduces the concept of workstyle: the freedom to choose when and where we work. By examining the outdated history of the standard 9 to 5 working week in the light of the modern digital age, the authors lay the foundation for an individualized and autonomous way of working. 

    Workstyle Review

    Workstyle (2022) by Lizzie Penny and Alex Hirst is an insightful book that explores the modern workplace and offers practical advice for finding career fulfillment. Here's why this book is definitely worth reading:

    • It provides thought-provoking insights into the changing nature of work and helps readers navigate the complexities of today's professional landscape.
    • With its emphasis on flexibility and work-life balance, the book offers strategies for creating a fulfilling workstyle that aligns with personal values and priorities.
    • Through real-life examples and practical exercises, the book empowers readers to discover their unique workstyle and build a successful and fulfilling career without sacrificing their well-being.

    Who should read Workstyle?

    • Career-optimizers who feel that our current way of working is inefficient or unnecessary.
    • People with disabilities or challenges which exclude them from the regular 9 to 5.
    • Visionaries who dare to dream of a better world.

    About the Author

    Alex Hirst is a working parent and cofounder of Hoxby – a global community dedicated to creating a happier, more inclusive, and more productive world by refreshing the way we think about work. His business partner and fellow cofounder Lizzie Penny is a mother, leader, and business strategist. In 2015, they came up with the concept of workstyle while dealing with work burnout and the challenges of becoming working parents.

    Categories with Workstyle

    Book summaries like Workstyle

    People ❤️ Blinkist 
    Sven O.

    It's highly addictive to get core insights on personally relevant topics without repetition or triviality. Added to that the apps ability to suggest kindred interests opens up a foundation of knowledge.

    Thi Viet Quynh N.

    Great app. Good selection of book summaries you can read or listen to while commuting. Instead of scrolling through your social media news feed, this is a much better way to spend your spare time in my opinion.

    Jonathan A.

    Life changing. The concept of being able to grasp a book's main point in such a short time truly opens multiple opportunities to grow every area of your life at a faster rate.

    Renee D.

    Great app. Addicting. Perfect for wait times, morning coffee, evening before bed. Extremely well written, thorough, easy to use.

    People also liked these summaries

    4.7 Stars
    Average ratings on iOS and Google Play
    31 Million
    Downloads on all platforms
    10+ years
    Experience igniting personal growth
    Powerful ideas from top nonfiction

    Try Blinkist to get the key ideas from 7,000+ bestselling nonfiction titles and podcasts. Listen or read in just 15 minutes.

    Start your free trial

    Workstyle FAQs 

    What is the main message of Workstyle?

    Workstyle teaches us to find a work-life balance and create a fulfilling career.

    How long does it take to read Workstyle?

    The estimated reading time for Workstyle is several hours. The Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is Workstyle a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Workstyle is worth reading for its practical tips on achieving work-life balance and finding fulfillment in your career.

    Who is the author of Workstyle?

    The authors of Workstyle are Lizzie Penny and Alex Hirst.

    What to read after Workstyle?

    If you're wondering what to read next after Workstyle, here are some recommendations we suggest:
    • Meaningful by Bernadette Jiwa
    • The Hunger Habit by Judson Brewer
    • On the Origin of Species by Charles Darwin
    • Life After Google by George Gilder
    • Cosmos by Carl Sagan
    • Saving Aziz by Chad Robichaux with David L. Thomas
    • Phaedo by Plato
    • The Idea Is the Easy Part by Brian Dovey
    • Life Leverage by Rob Moore
    • The Anxious Generation by Jonathan Haidt