Summer months can be difficult for your employees. During this time, workers complain of the stifling heat, productivity drops and staff struggle to cope in stuffy and hot offices. As a business owner, you have to do your best to keep your employees comfortable and cool during the summer. This way, you keep your staff healthy and happy, as well as prevent a drop in employee productivity during the hot afternoons. Here are a few suggestions to keep your valuable employees cool, productive, comfortable, and happy during the summer:
- Encourage Your Employees to Stay Hydrated
This advice may sound simple enough, but many are unaware of how much water the body loses through perspiration.
The body sweats to keep the skin cool. This bodily action, however, depletes the body of water and other nutrients necessary for proper physical and mental function. This can contribute to dehydration and heatstroke.
So, remind your employees to get plenty of additional water. You could install additional water stations in the office. If plain water is boring for some workers, offer flavored beverages to encourage people to stay hydrated.
- Keep the AC Unit on During Hot Weather
The central air conditioning system in your office is one of the quickest ways to cool down your staff during a heatwave. If possible, keep the AC unit and maintain a working temperature that is comfortable for your employees throughout the summer.
- Provide Cool Snacks
Make working in the office more enjoyable with a weekly cool snack social. Offer cold and refreshing snacks and beverages, such as ice cream, milkshake and iced tea.
Bringing your employees together every week to indulge and enjoy a sweet treat will not only cool them down, but also give everyone a chance to get together. You can even take this a step further by recognizing employees who are going the extra mile in the organization and discussing things going on within the company.
- Host a Day of Water Activities
On top of providing cool snacks, consider hosting an afternoon full of water-related activities. Plan this at least a week in advance. When planning, make sure that you choose the hottest day of the workweek.
Remember to inform your employees about the water events by doing an e-mail blast. Then, bring everyone together for some fun summer team bonding.
Pro-tip: get someone to take pictures of the event. You could upload pictures of your employees having fun on your business social media account or website. This shows how much fun your business is and how much you value your employees. If you don’t have a company website, get in touch with a marketing agency that can assist you with this task.
- Keep Your Windows Closed During the Hottest Part of the Day
A common misconception that some employees have when trying to cool down is opening the windows. If the temperature outside is warmer than the temperature inside the office, then you’ll just lose the cool air built up. What’s worse, this action will make the air conditioning system work harder, as the machine needs to regulate the temperature. This can result in higher energy bills.
So, make sure that your employees only open the windows in the evening (if you have people working in the graveyard shift) or in the early morning when the temperature outside is cooler than inside the office. More importantly, keep the windows shut if you have an AC system running.
- Use Sunscreens or Blinds
Sometimes, closing the window isn’t enough. If your building has big windows that serve as a suntrap, consider putting up sunscreens or blinds. These window treatments prevent excessive sunlight from entering and heating the office. What’s more, blinds and sunscreens prevent sun glare that can distract employees and minimize eyestrain.
- Encourage Employees to Wear Light Clothing
During hot days, you could relax the dress code by allowing employees to wear loose and light clothing instead of thick, dark and heavy clothes. This will help keep workers happy and minimize the unsightly appearance of shirt sweat patches. If you’re going to implement this policy, make sure that it’s in line with your dress code.
- Switch Off Unnecessary Electronic Devices
Electronic devices, such as desktop computers, mobile phones and printers, are necessary for the workplace. These devices, however, generate heat, which contributes to the warming of your office.
If these devices aren’t in use, consider turning them off if your employees won’t be using them frequently. Apart from keeping the office cool, this action will help save electricity.
Don’t let summer heat demotivate your employees and potentially affect your bottom line. Keep your workers cool by applying these eight suggestions.