BRYCE ON MANAGEMENT
- Who controls the thermostat in your office?
One of the touchiest subjects in any office is the room temperature. This has probably caused more arguments in the office than just about anything else. It may seem like a small thing but people tend to be passionate about the temperature. When it comes to controlling the thermostat, women typically like to turn it up, while men turn it down.
There are pros and cons to keeping the office cool or warm. If it is cool, people tend to be more alert but it may also affect the joints (as anyone with arthritis can tell you). Interestingly, certain office equipment, such as computers, operate better under cooler temperatures. On the other hand, a warm room on a cold winter day is welcomed by just about everyone, but if it becomes too warm, especially on a summer day, it can put people to sleep particularly after lunch. It can also cause people to slowly become irritable, impatient and irrational which isn’t exactly conducive fora cooperative work environment.
If you leave the temperature to the employees to control, you’ll probably hear the thermostat click up and down like a pogo stick which inevitably drives heating and air conditioning bills sky high. If you’re an office manager, you would be wise to put a lock on the thermostat and hide the key. Whatever you do, don’t turn the temperature over to the employees by a show of hands. I’ve seen this done and believe it or not has led to a division in the employees and hurt morale. As manager, you are responsible for controlling the work environment which includes the temperature of the room as well as other things, such as noise and cleanliness.
As for me, I’m of the school of keeping it “cool” as I would rather keep the employees more alert during the work day. If you’ve got a problem with it, they’ve got this new thing out to keep you warm: sweaters.
Keep the Faith!
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Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 30 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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Copyright © 2013 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.
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