Want to improve office productivity? Offer coffee instead of water!
No, really. And it's not the caffeine. Read on. . .
So, one of the clients I'm spending a lot of time with lately has a little break room with a water cooler and one of those automatic pod coffee machines - the kind that let you select from a variety of coffee and tea products in little single-use pods, pop one in the machine, hit a button, and wait a few seconds. To be honest, I'm not a big fan of most mass-market coffee products, but the stuff this one produces is actually pretty good. And the people in this place go through enough of it that it's usually fresh.
Now, about that water cooler. The office recently switched vendors, so the old machine went away and a new one took it's place. It's slow. s. . . . .l. . . . . o. . . .wwwwwwww. . . . . . . . . Slow to the point that some of the diehard water-drinkers started pondering the coffee machine, instead.
So, I timed them. (yes, I'm a geek.) As it turns out, assuming an astute and proficient user, the coffee machine is FASTER than the water cooler. Yes, it takes less time to heat up 8 ounces of water and force it through a small puck of coffee than it does to simply dispense it from the water cooler.
So, want to increase productivity in your office? Ditch the water cooler and get a coffee machine, instead. People will be back at their desks several seconds faster after each refreshment break.