How often do you find yourself crouched in a corner of your office with a 'work blanket' that you carry every day because it is just so freaking cold? It's a known fact that most offices have freezing temperatures and it's mostly women who are layering up to survive 9 to 5. Men are normally quite comfortable since the male body generates more heat when it is at rest than a female's body.
A recent study has proven that low temperatures actually reduce the productivity of women. The study, published in PLOS ONE by researchers Tom Chang and Agne Kajackaite, had 550 college students in Berlin perform different tasks like adding double-digit numbers, making words out of a jumbled set of 10 letters, among other things to check their performance levels in different temperatures.
“The magnitude of the effect was really surprising, especially for the math task,” Tom, who is a business professor at the University of Southern California and co-author of the paper, told a magazine.
“Our results suggest that in gender-balanced workplaces, temperatures should be set significantly higher than current standards,” the paper stated. Did you hear the sweet sweet sound of justice?
The other co-author of the study Agne Kajackaite, Ethics and Behavioural Economics Researcher at the Berlin Social Science Center, shared that as the temperature increased and it became warmer, women began to perform better. “When we start at low temperatures, the gender gap is huge in the Math task,” she says. She also added that there came a point when there were no gender gaps in performance and both men and women were performing well at a warmer temperature, “As the temperature increases, women become better and better and better, and at some point, there’s no gender gap.”
Agne expressed her worry over the issue while talking to an international magazine and said that the temperature can have a direct impact on your productivity - which should be taken seriously. “Temperature could affect not just the comfort, but the everyday performance of people,” she said. “If you feel more comfortable in the office with your five sweaters, or without your sweater, it might also affect your performance, so you should take it seriously,” she added.
Looks like it's time to take up the gender-neutral temperature conversation with your office manager.
Featured Image: YouTube
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