16 THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT NAP PODS
We all know what it’s like to go to work without having had a good night’s sleep. Sure, you can make it through the day okay enough. But there’s absolutely no chance you’ll be on your A game.
Understanding the importance of a well-rested staff, many well-known companies — like Google, Facebook, The Huffington Post, and Proctor & Gamble — are encouraging their staffs to get more sleep in what to date has traditionally been the most unlikely of places to do such a thing: the office.
Many forward-thinking companies are investing in nap pods for their organizational culture, which are essentially smart (i.e., connected) pieces of furniture designed specifically for the power nap (the ones at Google look like this). Before you brush off nap pods as a passing fad, consider the following:
- Lots of Americans don’t get enough sleep: If you feel tired often, you wouldn’t be alone. According to recent research by the National Geographic Channel, 73% of Americans don’t get enough sleep. WebMD says the average adult needs about eight hours of sleep each night. If you’re not getting enough sleep, put your devices down way ahead of passing out. You’ll get a better night’s rest if you eat healthier and exercise too.
- A good night’s rest is essential for workplace productivity: It’s nearly impossible to be as effective as possible at work when you’re exhausted. Data backs up the claim: a recent study conducted by the University of Cambridge revealed that a lack of sleep is associated with lower workplace productivity. Those who sleep more produce more.
- Insomnia costs businesses big bucks: A majority of American workers are tired, and this exhaustion can be quantified in dollars. A recent Harvard Medical School study showed that insomnia costs U.S. businesses 11.3 days, or $2,280, per employee each year. Spread that number across your workforce, and you could probably afford to buy a nap pod or 17. More on that later.
- Sleep makes you happy: We’re grouchy when we’re exhausted. Studies show that those fortunate souls who get a full night’s sleep are measurably happier than their peers who crash for a few hours here and there.
- Happiness is also a critical component of productivity: Research from the University of Warwick shows that happier workers are 12% more productive than their more sullen colleagues. So sleep makes people happier, and happier people make their companies more money. Point taken.
- Americans are working longer hours than ever before: U.S. workers may be making more money these days, but that’s largely because they’re working more hours, according to The Hamilton Project. In other words, the 9-to-5, Monday-through-Friday job is quickly becoming a thing of the past. More time at work means less time available for sleep.
- Sleep deprivation leads to accidents and injuries in the workplace: We’re not as sharp when we’re tired: workers who haven’t gotten enough sleep are more likely to be injured in work-related accidents, according to WebMD. This is why business owners are increasing letting employees close their eyes on the job when they need to.
- There’s a reason we all know the term “power nap”: The Sleep Foundation says 20- or 30-minute naps can improve your alertness, mood, and overall performance. So power naps? They pretty much restore your power. They’re named appropriately.
- Companies are increasingly using nap pods: Understanding that workers are happier and healthier — and therefore more productive — many progressive businesses are choosing to invest in their employees, which includes acquiring nap pods. Christopher Lindholst, CEO of MetroNaps, says demand for his nap pod product spiked 186% in the last two years.
- Millennials like perks: It’s no secret millennials are drawn to companies that offer fantastic perks. The ability to take a nap in the office is quite the perk, according to absolutely every person you’d ask.
- On average, nap pods cost between $8,000 and $13,000: While they’re not the cheapest things in the world, nap pods — which, remember, are business expenses — will likely help you realize a return on investment quickly. (Keep the aforementioned $2,280 figure in mind.)
- Nap pods are supercomfortable: Ergonomically designed, nap pods are built in a way that allows workers to escape the hullabaloo of the average workday. Close the visor, and presto, you escape to your own private and relaxing world. Outside stressors ostensibly disappear for at least a few moments. “Take me to your nap pod …”
- They’re also extremely customizable: Some folks might enjoy napping at 80-degree angles. Others might prefer 71-degree angles. And still others might find nothing more comfortable than the sweet embrace of 92-degree angles. Okay, maybe they’re not that precise — but nap pods can be adjusted to meet your unique comfort specifications.
- You can preprogram nap pods to wake you up at a certain time: Worried that your staff members will jump inside a nap pod and disappear for the rest of the day? Don’t sweat it: nap pods can be preprogrammed to wake up napping folk at certain intervals (e.g., 20 or 30 minutes). So your star front-end developer won’t sleep for 20 hours when you’re launching your new site.
- You can listen to soothing music in nap pods: There are nappers who prefer the sounds of silence. But there are also those who prefer soothing tunes. Whatever your preference, nap pods have you covered. If you want, you can listen to calming music while your pod synchronously vibrates. It’s like an ephemeral vacation.
- Who doesn’t like a good nap?: You don’t need statistics to tell you that people like to nap. Your employees will be happier and healthier should you choose to encourage them to close their eyes when they need to.
If yours is a team of three, you might not want to buy three nap pods. But if you manage a team of hard workers who routinely burn the midnight oil, reward their dedication by investing in their comfort and well-being. Who knows? You might even catch up on your own sleep debt, too.