What is the Optimal Office Temperature for Productivity and Focus?

Optimal Office Temperature for Productivity and Focus
Extremely warm or cool weather can have a serious impact on your personal productivity.

Have you ever felt burned out and uninterested in working? The reason for your poor motivation might not be a lack of willpower or other psychological factor. A range of factors go into making you productive, may of which are environmental.

Spend too much time in an unproductive environment and you’ll find your output declining, regardless of your personal willpower. Spend time in a very productive environment and you’ll naturally get lots done, even if you don’t feel motivated.

A range of environmental factors go into making you productive. One of the most important, and one that we’ve discussed in detail on this blog, is the powerful and measurable effect that natural light can have on your productivity.

While natural light is one of the most important environmental factors for optimal productivity, it’s far from the only one. Heat, humidity, noise and a huge variety of other factors all have a measurable effect on the way you work.

In this guide, we’ll look at the effect of heat on your personal productivity level and share some actionable tips, tactics and techniques that you can use to increase your workplace’s productivity level using temperature.

What is the optimal temperature for productivity?

Numerous studies have found that the ideal temperature for productivity in most people is between 70 and 77 degrees Fahrenheit. Interestingly, this temperature is higher than many people think – most people associate productivity with cold.

The exact ideal temperature, according to most studies, is 71 degrees. At this point, personal productivity is maximized and greater that at any other temperature, with productivity declining as the temperature increases and decreases.

A single degree above 71 results in a decline in productivity, albeit not a particularly severe one. Drop the temperature down a degree and most people will experience a small decline in their average productivity level.

Once the temperature rises beyond 75 degrees, productivity starts to decrease at a faster rate. Because of this sudden drop-off point, it’s best to aim for a temperature of between 71 and 75 degrees, on average, in your workplace.

How can you achieve optimal temperature-related productivity?

Achieving the optimal temperature for productivity can be difficult, especially if the office you work in is used by multiple people. While 71 degrees is the average best temperature, everyone has their own “most comfortable” temperature preference.

One of the best ways to make sure you’re close to the best productivity temperature is to avoid wearing overly warm clothing. Set the thermostat to 71 degrees and take off jackets, coats and other thick clothing in the office to reduce excess heat.

This brings the actual temperature you feel – and not a higher temperature caused by your clothing – as close to the ambient temperature as possible, preventing you from feeling too warm and reducing your overall productivity level.

Another technique is to make sure your office is completely temperature neutral. A large window or old skylight could affect the temperature in your office, especially if they don’t block UV light transfer.

Replace outdated windows and skylights with modern daylighting systems that are insulated against heat transfer. This prevents your workplace from feeling too warm on hot, sunny days with a higher-than-average temperature.

Finally, if you work in a warm climate, avoid turning your air conditioning down to a low temperature to reduce the effects of the outside heat. Choose a neutral heat like 71 degrees and let yourself adjust gradually to minimize non-optimal heat levels.

Is your workplace heated or cooled for optimal productivity?

While temperature may not seem like a huge factor in productivity, the heat level in your office can have a huge effect on how well you focus, especially if it becomes too warm or too cool.

Set your workplace’s thermostat to the perfect level for maximal productivity – 71 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit – and you’ll create a highly productive environment that’s geared towards optimal work output.

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