Every CXO has spent a few hours sitting down staring blankly wondering how to maximise their organisation’s productivity. And since you’ve already thought a million different ways to solve the problem, here’s a little suggestion for you: indoor air quality.
Often an overlooked factor, studies have shown that poor air quality in the workplace can lead to reduced cognitive function, decreased focus, and lower productivity among employees. This ultimately neutralises efforts and investments in last-generation productivity tools and initiatives, which we believe is the last thing you’d wish for.
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The Link Between Air Quality and Cognitive Function
Sleepy and Sluggish: why poor air quality IS the real productivity killer
What’s the point of having great, talented and smart people working on various projects, if half of the time they are yawning, with a foggy mind and easily distracted?
Research conducted by Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health reveals that the air quality within an office has a substantial influence on employees' cognitive function, response times, and ability to focus. The study found that increased concentrations of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and lower ventilation rates were associated with slower response times and reduced accuracy on cognitive tests .
Moreover, impaired cognitive function was observed at concentrations of PM2.5 and CO2 that are commonly found in indoor environments. These findings highlight the detrimental effects of poor air quality on employees' mental acuity and productivity.
Financial Impact on Employers
What if Toxic Air Suffocates Your Business?
Imagine every three steps you take to reach the top of a mountain, you’d be forced to take one step back. Instead of focusing on walking faster, you should be focusing on not losing ground.
That’s the exact metaphor of the financial loss caused by bad air quality.
On top of the direct impact on employee well-being, poor air quality also leads to financial losses for businesses. A study estimates that health-related work losses due to low productivity cost US employers over $260 billion annually .
Additionally, by investing just $40 per person per year to improve ventilation rates, employers can recoup $6,000 to $7,000 per person per year in increased productivity, demonstrating a substantial return on investment. These figures emphasize the financial benefits of prioritizing air quality in the workplace.
Creating a Healthy and Productive Workplace
Want to unleash the Hidden Potential? Breathe easily
Try taking a picture of a beautiful place, with an old phone, with bad lighting, maybe when it is full of people and traffic.
Now take the same picture with a professional camera, with the colours and calm of the sunrise unleashing their beauty.
It’s the same place, but not the same picture.
Clean air can really transform your workforce performance, to make them shine at their best
Having recognized the impact of air quality on productivity, business owners should prioritize the health and well-being of their employees.
Regular monitoring of air quality, adopting technology to measure pollutants, and implementing effective ventilation systems are vital steps in creating a healthy and productive workplace.
Additionally, promoting awareness among employees about the importance of good indoor air quality and encouraging them to adopt healthy practices can contribute to a positive work environment.
The prism with which to look at the other side of the moon
To improve air quality and enhance productivity, business owners can take several measures. Firstly, ensuring proper ventilation is crucial. Increasing the ventilation rate and maintaining optimal levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) can significantly enhance cognitive performance .
Moreover, incorporating greenery and plants into the office space has been shown to improve satisfaction and productivity. We understand growing a full forest in your office room can be a pretty hard task, but you can always grow “virtual trees”, by becoming a Pure Air Zone.
Third, becoming a Pure Air Zone could be the coolest and ultimate solution, as if you were planting a forest in your office.
Make clean air spell success for your bottom line
As a CXO, understanding the urgency of addressing poor air quality in the workplace is crucial for maximizing productivity and ensuring the well-being of your employees. By investing in measures to improve air quality, as a business owner, you can not only enhance the health and well-being of your people - your biggest assets - but also drive financial gains through increased productivity and business continuity. Taking action now to create a healthy work environment will reap long-term benefits for both employees, partners and customers and the business as a whole.