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Why Are Offices Always Too Cold For Women? A New Study Gave The Answer

Why Are Offices Always Too Cold For Women? A New Study Gave The Answer

If you are a woman who always feels cold in the office, you aren’t alone. There are countless women just like you who feel as if they are freezing at work everyday and they too have to contend with funny looks from their male colleagues when they subtly turn the air conditioning down.

The question is, why do women tend to feel the cold in the office more then men? Recently, a study entitled ‘Energy Consumption in Buildings and Female Thermal Demand’ provided some answers.

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Many men think that women who are cold in the office are just being awkward, but finally we have science to prove that there is a reason why offices are always too cold for women. Read on if you want to find out exactly why you are experiencing these problems in the workplace.

Women’s bodies produce less heat than men’s

Findings have shown that women’s bodies produce less heat than their male counterparts. This is due to the fact that women are generally smaller than men and they tend to have less muscle and more fat. As muscle produces more heat than fat, this is a big reason as to why females aren’t able to produce as much heat as males.

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After analysing the metabolic rates of 16 young women who worked in offices, it was found that they were far lower than standard values. In fact, women have up to 35% lower metabolic rates than men, and with male bodies predominantly used to set office temperature standards, this means that the standard temperatures used in offices to provide a comfortable environment are too low for many women.

Air conditioners make it harder to maintain optimum temperature

Maintaining an optimum office temperature in buildings that utilise air condition is far more complex than you may realise. You need to calculate occupancy, clothing expectations, system efficiency and so much more to be able to accurately provide and maintain a comfortable temperature.

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As we have already touched on, the thermal comfort standards take into account metabolic rates that appear to have overestimated women’s intrinsic heat production. Consequently, the standards are more favourable to male dominated office environments.

What you can do to solve the problem

Taking the necessary steps to reconfigure air conditioning systems to take into account that workforces are no longer predominantly male will lead to greater comfort for female employees. Furthermore, with less focus being placed on making offices feel like a refrigerator, the amount of energy consumed by air-conditioners would significantly decrease and this will only have a positive effect on CO2 emissions and a company’s utility bills – so it is a win win situation!

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If you work in a shared serviced office, make sure you talk to the landlord before you start looking at alternative temperature settings on the air conditioning system. They want to provide you with a comfortable environment and should be willing to take the necessary steps to ensure that the temperature is at a level that is comfortable for both male and female workers.

Ultimately, we won’t see widespread change until the standards take into account female bodies. It may seem like an obvious option, but the world of science can be seen as dated because they don’t have a great track record when it comes to acknowledging women’s existence. Consequently, a quicker option could be to speak to your line manager if you feel the office temperature is causing you ill health or preventing you from completing your work.

Getting the standards changed is a long process so in the meantime you’ll probably see us women hunched over our desks with a less than fashionable hoodie on, but at least we’ll be warm!

Featured photo credit: Stockpic via stokpic.com

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James Timpson

Marketeer

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Last Updated on November 19, 2019

20 Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity

20 Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity

Are you usually punctual or late? Do you finish things within the time you stipulate? Do you hand in your reports/work on time? Are you able to accomplish what you want to do before deadlines? Are you a good time manager?

If your answer is “no” to any of the questions above, that means you’re not managing your time as well as you want. Here are 20 time management tips to help you manage time better:

1. Create a Daily Plan

Plan your day before it unfolds. Do it in the morning or even better, the night before you sleep. The plan gives you a good overview of how the day will pan out. That way, you don’t get caught off guard. Your job for the day is to stick to the plan as best as possible.

2. Peg a Time Limit to Each Task

Be clear that you need to finish X task by 10am, Y task by 3pm, and Z item by 5:30pm. This prevents your work from dragging on and eating into time reserved for other activities.

3. Use a Calendar

Having a calendar is the most fundamental step to managing your daily activities. If you use outlook or lotus notes, calendar come as part of your mailing software.

I use it. It’s even better if you can sync your calendar to your mobile phone and other hardwares you use – that way, you can access your schedule no matter where you are. Here’re the 10 Best Calendar Apps to Stay on Track .

Find out more tips about how to use calendar for better time management here: How to Use a Calendar to Create Time and Space

4. Use an Organizer

An organizer helps you to be on top of everything in your life. It’s your central tool to organize information, to-do lists, projects, and other miscellaneous items.

These Top 15 Time Management Apps and Tools can help you organize better, pick one that fits your needs.

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5. Know Your Deadlines

When do you need to finish your tasks? Mark the deadlines out clearly in your calendar and organizer so you know when you need to finish them.

But make sure you don’t make these 10 Common Mistakes When Setting Deadlines.

6. Learn to Say “No”

Don’t take on more than you can handle. For the distractions that come in when you’re doing other things, give a firm no. Or defer it to a later period.

Leo Babauta, the founder of Zen Habits has some great insights on how to say no: The Gentle Art of Saying No

7. Target to Be Early

When you target to be on time, you’ll either be on time or late. Most of the times you’ll be late. However, if you target to be early, you’ll most likely be on time.

For appointments, strive to be early. For your deadlines, submit them earlier than required.

Learn from these tips about how to prepare yourself to be early, instead of just in time.

8. Time Box Your Activities

This means restricting your work to X amount of time. Why time boxing is good for you? Here’re 10 reasons why you should start time-boxing.

You can also read more about how to do time boxing here: #5 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity.

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9. Have a Clock Visibly Placed Before You

Sometimes we are so engrossed in our work that we lose track of time. Having a huge clock in front of you will keep you aware of the time at the moment.

10. Set Reminders 15 Minutes Before

Most calendars have a reminder function. If you have an important meeting to attend, set that alarm 15 minutes before.

You can learn more about how reminders help you remember everything in this article: The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder That Works)

11. Focus

Are you multi-tasking so much that you’re just not getting anything done? If so, focus on just one key task at one time. Multitasking is bad for you.

Close off all the applications you aren’t using. Close off the tabs in your browser that are taking away your attention. Focus solely on what you’re doing. You’ll be more efficient that way.

Lifehack’s CEO has written a definitive guide on how to focus, learn the tips: How to Focus and Maximize Your Productivity (the Definitive Guide)

12. Block out Distractions

What’s distracting you in your work? Instant messages? Phone ringing? Text messages popping in?

I hardly ever use chat nowadays. The only times when I log on is when I’m not intending to do any work. Otherwise it gets very distracting.

When I’m doing important work, I also switch off my phone. Calls during this time are recorded and I contact them afterward if it’s something important. This helps me concentrate better.

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Find more tips on how to minimize distractions to achieve more in How to Minimize Distraction to Get Things Done

13. Track Your Time Spent

When you start to track your time, you’re more aware of how you spend your time. For example, you can set a simple countdown timer to make sure that you finish a task within a period of time, say 30 minutes or 1 hour. The time pressure can push you to stay focused and work more efficiently.

You can find more time tracking apps here and pick one that works for you.

14. Don’t Fuss About Unimportant Details

You’re never get everything done in exactly the way you want. Trying to do so is being ineffective.

Trying to be perfect does you more harm than good, learn here about how perfectionism kills your productivity and how to ditch the perfectionism mindset.

15. Prioritize

Since you can’t do everything, learn to prioritize the important and let go of the rest.

Apply the 80/20 principle which is a key principle in prioritization. You can also take up this technique to prioritize everything on your plate: How to Prioritize Right in 10 Minutes and Work 10X Faster

16. Delegate

If there are things that can be better done by others or things that are not so important, consider delegating. This takes a load off and you can focus on the important tasks.

When you delegate some of your work, you free up your time and achieve more. Learn about how to effectively delegate works in this guide: How to Delegate Work (the Definitive Guide for Successful Leaders)

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17. Batch Similar Tasks Together

For related work, batch them together.

For example, my work can be categorized into these core groups:

  1. writing (articles, my upcoming book)
  2. coaching
  3. workshop development
  4. business development
  5. administrative

I batch all the related tasks together so there’s synergy. If I need to make calls, I allocate a time slot to make all my calls. It really streamlines the process.

18. Eliminate Your Time Wasters

What takes your time away your work? Facebook? Twitter? Email checking? Stop checking them so often.

One thing you can do is make it hard to check them – remove them from your browser quick links / bookmarks and stuff them in a hard to access bookmarks folder. Replace your browser bookmarks with important work-related sites.

While you’ll still checking FB/Twitter no doubt, you’ll find it’s a lower frequency than before.

19. Cut off When You Need To

The number one reason why things overrun is because you don’t cut off when you have to.

Don’t be afraid to intercept in meetings or draw a line to cut-off. Otherwise, there’s never going to be an end and you’ll just eat into the time for later.

20. Leave Buffer Time In-Between

Don’t pack everything closely together. Leave a 5-10 minute buffer time in between each tasks. This helps you wrap up the previous task and start off on the next one.

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Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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