In the hustle and bustle of everyday office life, one of the most relieving moments is when the sweet smell of coffee whiffs past my desk.
“Finally my coffee break,” I usually find myself thinking “and a much deserved break at that!’
The term coffee break according to Wikipedia originated from America where it was popularised by a Pan American Coffee Bureau in 1952 in an add campaign “give yourself a coffee break and get what coffee gives you.”
‘Coffee break’ according to wikipedia is a gathering for a snack and short downtime practiced by employees in business and industry. Generally it is used to denote any short break from work.
Originally people drunk coffee at these breaks but times have changed and one doesn’t have to drink coffee only, it could be tea or just take a break.
This is a short break that lasts about 10-20 minutes and is usually observed in the morning after the first 1/3 of a work day and in the afternoon. This break is usually held away from the work place say at a cafeteria or tea room.
Coffee breaks are important because human minds are not like computers and need to rest if they are to be productive. These breaks take one’s mind off work and help you relax. You also get refreshed and are able to concentrate better and also be more productive after these breaks.
Apart from helping you be more productive, it’s also healthy not to work yourself like a machine but to take a break every now and then so as not to strain yourself too much. It reduces stress which could amount from work without rest.
Some employers will frown at this idea saying that this is a waste of time and would rather have their employees work throughout the day, but 20 minutes is not a long time if its going to help your workers unwind and get refreshed and thus do better work.
Coffee breaks should also be encouraged because when one knows that they are going to get a break soon they are more inclined to concentrate and do the work better knowing they will get the break.
It also creates some sort of order in the office because employees don’t go for breaks whenever they feel like. Employees use these breaks to make small talk, gossip and for some to smoke a cigarette an thus the alternate term ‘cigarette break’.
Employers need to acknowledge these breaks in their work places if they are to have more productive employees and to create a work friendly environment.
So the next time you are on the ‘coffee break’, remember that is not just about the coffee.