Catch some Z’s….if you can. Workforces are experiencing epidemic sleep deprivation. Emails, tight deadlines and after-hours communication can void employees’ pursuit of rejuvenating sleep. If an employee loses two hours of sleep four nights in a row, the shortfall equates to having a blood alcohol level of 0.08. If it’s illegal to drive in that condition, why is it acceptable to work when equally impaired? Here are sleep strategies that can foster employee productivity and reduce your coffee expenses:
Numerous scientific studies indicate that napping refreshes and improves performance. It worked for Winston Churchill — he said that his daily, 2-hour nap allowed him to get 1 ½ days worth of work done in 24 hours. Twenty minute snoozes can also provide an invigorating boost. Adding sleep pods or quiet spaces to your office can give workers a kickstart. Sleep deprivation is so problematic that France recently passed a law decreeing that businesses with more than 50 employees are forbidden to send or receive emails after hours.
Exposure to natural light helps employees sleep better at night, making them more productive during the day. In a 2013 study, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine found daytime workers slept better after exposure to daylight. Workers occupying spaces illuminated by natural light received 173 percent more white light and slept approximately 46 minutes more at night.
MODIFY WORK HOURS
Explore moving your main working hours back one hour. Older workers may be primed to dive in at 9AM, while younger employees are dragging at that hour. This discrepancy results from a shift of an internal body clock as you age. Accommodating this shift will aid your employees as well as your business.
Curtail the negative effects traveling has on your employees’ sleep by:
- Limiting the number of redeye business flights.
- If a redeye is imperative, suggest that all meetings be scheduled at least one day after landing in a new time zone.
- Never permit an employee to fly overnight and then drive. Have him or her picked up by a taxi or car service after landing.
Swan Medical’s 2015 Sleep in Business America study indicated that 50 percent of 30,000 employees surveyed at five US companies didn’t received sufficient sleep. Prevent your employees from becoming a statistic. Enhance your team’s productivity by enhancing their sleep.