What I’m wondering, is why it took so long for a study to come out to validate this!
I wrote an article a few weeks ago about social media being Gen-Y’s “water cooler.” Why submit yourself to awkward, forced, and sometimes painfully repetitive conversations at a water cooler when you can spend that same time catching up with friends and family online? This study plays in tandem with that, and gives credibility to those “stolen” minutes at the office spent tweeting of Facebooking.
To me, this is just another painful example of how the “tried and true” ways of Corporate America are outdated and in dire need of a defibrillator to the jugular in order revitalize the workplace.
Take the following examples to help these points sink in:
-Sitting at a computer for 8 straight hours with no breaks is like being strapped to a chair and being forced to listen to Rick Astley’s Never Going to Give You Up on repeat for the entire day. You’re brain is going to be numb. Your productivity is going to suffer, your mood is going to be off, and you become increasingly more likely to punch a koala (see Careerbuilder.com Super Bowl ad below)
-Sitting at a computer all day with intermittent water cooler breaks is like shotgunning a beer; it’ll briefly wake you up, but it’s only one beer. Not enough for a buzz, but just enough to put you right to sleep – and you’ll take more frequent bathroom breaks to pass the time/beer.
-Sitting at a computer all day and having breaks to cruise your favorite websites is like a never-ending Red Bull. The breaks revitalize the mind, break up the monotony, and help engage separate parts of the brain.
According to the researchers, "short and unobtrusive breaks, such as a quick surf of the Internet, enables the mind to rest itself, leading to a higher total net concentration for a days' work, and as a result, increased productivity." More importantly, "firms spend millions on software to block their employees from watching videos, using social networking sites or shopping online under the pretence that it costs millions in lost productivity." Someone should let them know their logic is flawed.
--Now let me clear my throat--