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From Burnout to Balance: Is Improving The Workplace Culture Through Nap Pods Worth It?

In a world that often glorifies burnout and the constant pursuit of productivity and rest is viewed as a weakness, a culture where the mere mention of a workplace nap can raise eyebrows.

We have said this often: overworking isn’t a badge of honour, and while employees have admitted to taking naps at work, there remains a significant portion of people who buy into the negative stigma associated with napping at work. 

But here's the question most people ask - Can improving workplace culture by including nap pods truly lead us from burnout to balance?

A woman napping in the Rest Space

Breaking the Stigma: Embracing Workplace Naps

In many workplaces, taking a nap during working hours is often met with scepticism and negative perceptions. This stigma is deeply rooted in societal narratives that link productivity to constant activity and perceive rest as a sign of idleness.

80% of workers say they’ve taken a nap on the job!

Do you know where the top spot to nap is?

The toilets!

Did you know that in a recent survey, Kitt Managed Office provider, found nearly half of UK workers express a desire for regular naps during their office day, with rest spaces as one of the top desired workplace amenities?

A Cosmopolitan Future of Work survey found out that millennials would even trade a higher salary for access to nap pods!

According to a study done by Atomik Research, 21% of employees choose not to talk about their sleep-related problems due to fears that it would hold back their careers.

Napping should be promoted in the workplace to better support these employees and their wellbeing.

The Misconceptions and Cultural Norms About Workplace Napping

  • One common misconception is the belief that constant activity equates to higher productivity. This fallacy assumes that consistently busy employees are more dedicated and valuable to the organisation. Napping, unfortunately, is often viewed through this narrow lens as a deviation from the expected norm, with implications of laziness attached.

  • Another is that cultural norms around work ethic contribute significantly to the stigma surrounding workplace napping. In societies that emphasise long working hours and limited breaks, taking time for rest during the workday can be misunderstood and viewed as a violation of cultural expectations. 

  • Employees often fear judgment from colleagues or superiors if they choose to take a nap. This fear can lead to heightened stress levels, creating a counterproductive environment where employees may sacrifice their wellbeing to avoid the potential stigma associated with napping.

  • Workplace napping is sometimes misinterpreted as a lack of work ethic. The belief that hard work requires constant effort without breaks perpetuates the idea that those who choose to nap are not putting in the necessary effort.

Shifting Paradigms: The Rise of Nap-Friendly Workplaces

Things are changing - with companies all over the world making napping part of their DNA. This goes past the Googles and Amazons - we are seeing many more traditional industries evolving. For example, a lot of the Magic Circle law firms have brought in nap pods, as well as the largest financial firms. Sleep webinars are commonplace in most organisations, and the value of rest is much more evident. 

This shift doesn’t need to be hard. 

Here are some ways you can improve your workplace rest culture:

Cultivating a Nap-Friendly Culture

Creating a workplace culture that embraces napping represents a paradigm shift, challenging traditional notions of constant work and recognising the significance of rest in achieving optimal performance. 

Designated Nap Spaces

A critical component of fostering a nap-friendly culture is the creation of designated nap spaces. These Rest Spaces  should be carefully designed to provide a comfortable, quiet, and private environment for employees to rest.

Investing in nap pods like the Rest Space, comfortable seating, and dim lighting contributes to the physical infrastructure necessary for employees to take effective and rejuvenating naps.

Leading By Example

Leaders play a pivotal role in shaping organisational culture. To establish a nap-friendly environment, leadership support is crucial. Executives and managers should endorse and actively advocate for the benefits of workplace napping.

By openly acknowledging the importance of rest, leaders set a precedent that prioritises employee wellbeing over outdated notions of perpetual busyness.

Education and Dispelling Myths

Dispelling myths about napping requires a comprehensive educational approach. Conduct workshops or seminars to educate employees on the science behind napping, its impact on cognitive function, and its potential benefits for mental health.

Providing factual information can empower employees to make informed decisions about incorporating naps into their routine.

Promoting Breaks and Flexibility

Promoting a nap-friendly culture involves recognising the importance of breaks and flexibility in the workday. Encourage employees to take short breaks, including naps, to recharge and enhance their focus. Emphasise the quality of work produced over the number of hours spent at the desk.

An Infographic showing how to improve workplace culture through napping

Impact on Mental Health and Productivity:

Understanding the roots of these stigmas is crucial, as they can contribute to a toxic work environment. The fear of being judged or labelled as lazy can adversely affect employee mental health, leading to increased stress and anxiety.

Furthermore, the reluctance to take breaks for rejuvenation can hinder overall productivity, as employees may struggle to maintain focus and energy throughout the day.

Get in touch with us for more information on improving your workplace culture through napping.


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