Lunch Break: Get Eating
This article is the second in a series on actual workers who use their lunch break for more than checking Facebook or (please, no) catching up on work. If you missed the first installment, check out Lunch Break: Get Moving.
Workers are sometimes under the impression that their employer wants them to use as little time as possible for lunch or a break and instead do more work. This is definitely not the case at Chitika, an online advertising and data analytics firm based outside of Boston. Seeing a pattern of employees forgoing lunch or only grabbing fast food, company CEO Venkat Kolluri decided to take action.
“At noon on the dot each day, a 3-foot gong (yes gong!) bangs and we are treated to a catered meal from a local restaurant that always has healthy and vegan options including fresh salads, juices, yogurts, wraps, and the like,” says employee Jennie Freedman.
(If that perk isn’t enough to make your mouth water, the lunch takes place in a communal area complete with hammocks, ping pong tables, and space for yoga twice a week.)
Kolluri obviously knows what experts have been preaching for years: Employees who do not pay attention to their short-term well-being usually end up paying the price down the road in terms of burnout, depression, and other issues. While it may be tempting to try to squeeze in every moment of work possible, there is a law of diminishing returns. The body needs food to refuel and time to properly consume and digest it.
Think of cars. A gas tank close to being empty may be able to make the vehicle go another mile or so, but eventually it will give out – making that decision not to stop to fill up a regrettable one. And no employer benefits from having a bunch of stalled clunkers.
Tomorrow, check out Lunch Break: Get Playing.