My new series of postings are for both teachers and students to use in conversational classes. You’ll find that all the themes are relevant, interesting, informative and most of all enjoyable.
Topic – Business
Level – intermediate
Domino effect – (n) a chain reaction; a series of events quickly following each other, each of which causes the next one
Unsanctioned – (adj) without permission
Siesta – (n) a midday or afternoon rest or nap, esp. as taken in Spain and Latin America
Reap – (v) to get something as a result of what you have done before
When employees take a coffee break, most companies don’t really mind. However, if employees take a short sleep break, they’ll probably get terminated. Yes, sleeping on the job is usually a major infraction.
However, it has been discovered that napping actually boosts creativity and alertness, which has a remarkable domino effect on the things the person does after his/her nap. So, if employees were permitted to take a 20 – 30 minute nap in the afternoon, in theory, they could be more productive. Of course, nowadays there are very few companies that allow napping on the job.
How long is your lunch break? Do you take a nap during your lunch time? Why or why not?
Sleeping on the job
Still, according to reports, napping that is unsanctioned – or sleeping on the job – in fact costs businesses in the U.S. about $17 billion annually in lost production.
But then, studies also reveal that tired employees cost businesses up to $140 billion each year in lost production.
These findings now raise the question: When is an acceptable hour or place for an employee to get some sleep, and when is it unacceptable?
In many European countries, like Spain, and so too in several Latin American nations, an afternoon nap or siesta is actually considered normal. Local shops even close for an hour or two during the afternoon.
A nap recharges the mind and body as well as provides that extra push needed to make a day productive, which is both a benefit to the employee and the employer.
Still, only 1 percent of American companies allow napping at work. That’s indeed a shame knowing all the benefits an employee reaps after napping. Companies like Nova, Nike, and Gould Evans Goodman Associates permit in-the-office siestas and they are very smart to do so.
Wind down – (ph.v) to reduce gradually
Tabilize – (v) to keep something at the same level
Grogginess – (n) the state of feeling weak or dizzy, especially because of illness or overindulgence (excess)
Turnover – (n) the rate at which people leave a company and are replaced
Absenteeism – (n) regular lack of attendance at work or some other place without good reasons
Stigma – (n) the shame or disgrace attached to something regarded as socially unacceptable
A “power nap” is simply a brief nap of 20 to 30 minutes during the middle of the day . Usually at this time, the brain’s prefrontal cortex experiences a winding down of activity. This short nap helps stabilize the brain’s activity because it provides relaxation and rest.
However, one must be careful not to exceed the 30 minute sleep or else one will enter a “deep sleep”. If you wake up in the middle of a deep sleep, you can experience inertia, the feeling of grogginess.
Recent studies suggest that power naps offer a lot of benefits like improved concentration, increased work productivity, better moods, and lowered stress.
According to The National Sleep Foundation, tired employees can be prone to:
• increased accidents and errors
• increased absenteeism
• increased employee turnover
The obvious benefits of siestas can not be taken for granted. It appears that many businesses could benefit from allowing nap breaks.
However, there is no need to form a rule that sets terms for napping in the office. It’s just a matter of removing the stigma linked with power napping.
By allowing employees to take power naps, what companies lose in time, they can make up for in increased productivity.