nkd employees sitting at a table eating pizza on a social event

Performance Management: 3 Reasons to Ditch the Desk Lunch

How do the small changes we make affect our performance at work? Diana explores the benefits of taking time out of your day to have lunch with the team.

2018, a fresh start and the ideal time to make a change and create new habits – we all tell ourselves this – but perhaps we overlook the small changes that can make a really big impact on your performance and productivity. They say that simply taking the time to make your bed each morning changes your mind-set, as you are starting the day with an achievement, ensuring that you spend the rest of the day in an elevated mood and are therefore more productive.

But what if I told you that breaking your desk lunch habit, and having lunch together with your colleagues also has significant value?

Lunching with colleagues can:

  1. Boost your performance: taking an hour away from your desk and spending it with your co-workers can be restorative. We all need time away from our desks and computers in the day, and taking the time to eat with your colleagues and clearing your head of work for an hour by socialising at lunch means you come back to your desk renewed and ready to tackle the rest of the day.
  2. Strengthen your team: eating lunch with your co-workers means getting to know them better, time in the office for casual conversation can be sparse however lunchtime chit chat, be it weekend plans, or dislike of tomatoes, seeing your colleagues as friends means that you can grow your understanding of the individuals you work with leading to working in better sync, better collaboration and overall improved efficiency.
  3. Lift your mood: Ed Diener and Martin Seligman, two leading experts in the field of happiness research have found that the happiest people are also social people, and friendships are a key part of this so why not add your colleagues to your pool of friends?

Eating Together at the Firehouse: How Workplace Commensality Relates to the Performance of Firefighters”  is a study conducted by Cornell University, on firefighters and how eating habits in the workplace impact both the individual and the team. The study, based on 395 firefighters over the course of 15 months, found that the platoons that did not eat together got lower performance ratings and were less confident in their colleagues and content in their work. The study backs the three points above completely and many companies are now organising team meals in order to bond their teams and capitalise on the benefits eating together can bring.

So if you aren’t already, make the change and give eating with your colleagues a try, perhaps it will change your mind-set at work, and keep you feeling satiated and optimistic for 2018.

Take our word for it….

Image of three people carrying stacks of pizza boxes

Image of three people around a table smiling and eating hot dogs

Diana Balan