I am so impressed that this is actually a concept that is used but I can see how this can feel a bit off to development managers.
Firstly, will a development manager of a small team really want to stop new feature productivity of everyone for a week? I know other things will be done in that week off but I find this will be a hard sell
My workaround for this is to let parts of the team go on firebreak rather than the entire team. This would mean at least something’s can still be delivered to the customer.
Secondly, how will a developer prove to their manager that they have actually spent the time constructive?
Well as Nathan suggested “grok” talks or share sessions are a great idea for this. These are small sessions designed to become familiar with the “learning’s” of the topic.
This would be one of the perks that I’d join a company for as I think it seems such a fantastic idea! This is something I will certainly try and introduce to my team if I can as I feel a lot of teh guys would benefit hugely