🆕 A new study highlights when and where people are at their best, while the word “workplace” is no longer synonymous with the office.
👉The shift has sparked questions around how wellbeing and productivity differ in a variety of environments, especially for people with jobs in the knowledge economy. Here are five findings of the neuroscience study (JLL and EMOTIV):
✅ Brains work better together in the morning. People in the study were 12% more engaged when they worked together in the morning compared to when they did the same work alone at a computer, with their brains more active and aroused when others were around. The morning element was important. The work people’s brains were doing, known as cognitive load, was on average 10% higher compared to the afternoon.
✅ Finding focus with friends. We might think that locking ourselves away will help us finish presentation slides or that 12-page white paper. But being near to our colleagues matters, too. Participants performed over 18% better on an individual task – completing more work with higher accuracy – when they performed the work around peers.
✅ Sometimes it’s just the vibe. For many people, a noisy office can be distracting, but an eerily quiet one can be worse, some people struggle when things are too quiet. It’s why some companies are using soundscapes and white-noise generators in the office.
✅ Not everything needs to be in person. When participants in the study were asked to attend a short presentation and complete a comprehension test on the content, their attention on average was 10% lower, they were 8% less relaxed and 18% less excited.
✅ Rules are boring. The study also revealed that enforcing particular policies are a sure-fire way to reduce engagement. When people were forced to work in an environment not of their choosing, we saw an average 6% increase in boredom. Once people were working in a space that matched their preferences, we saw almost every important metric improve. Cognitive load/brain power went up, attention went up, interest went up.
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