Research has shown that people at work that take smoking breaks are likely to be less stressed – so one company has sought to redress the balance by offering non-smokers ‘Sweet Moments’ as an alternative.
When thebigword – the world’s 13th largest translation company – conducted research into the happiness of its staff, it found that those that smoked took on average three breaks per day of between 7-8 minutes each and that the social aspect of smoking breaks – when they could chat amongst colleagues – put these smokers into a heightened positive frame of mind when returning to their desks.
Far from wanting to encourage his workforce to smoke – quite the opposite – thebigword’s CEO, Larry Gould, came up with an ingenious idea for ensuring that non-smokers could have similar opportunities for regular socialising and thereby enjoy the benefits: by setting up ‘Sweet Moments’ sweet and fruit counters for them to gather around.
Furthermore, whereas buying cigarettes takes up a good proportion of any smoker’s pay packet, these sweet treats will be offered to workers by free of charge – thebigword only request that staff consider an optional donation to its chosen charity, Martin House Hospice.
Larry said: “We want all our wonderful colleagues to feel comfortable to take a break from their desks, have a chat with their co-workers and enjoy a sugar fix or some healthy fruit.
“The happiest workers are the best workers, so thebigword will benefit from a refreshed, happy workforce that can return to its desks in the best possible frame of mind for delivering excellent work.
“There might also be the added advantage, we hope, that staff that do smoke might pack it in and join their colleagues at the sweet and fruit counters instead.”
thebigword is a world top-20 language services provider with a £40.1 million turnover, offering high-quality translation and interpreting. thebigword has a global network of 10,000 linguists operating across 77 countries, with the ability to translate into more than 200 languages and nearly 1,200 language combinations. Its headquarters is in Leeds, UK, with offices around the world including: London, New York, San Francisco, Düsseldorf, Stockholm, Tokyo, and Beijing.
thebigword translates 400 million words per year and carries out more than two million telephone interpreting minutes per month. It manages more than 70,000 face-to-face interpreting bookings per year and has a network of 2,500 clients worldwide.