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The Office Is Buzzing…


It’s still cold and rainy here in DC, but there’s a buzz in the air. It’s a caffeinated buzz of excitement about an updated lunch pantry at the American Psychological Association.

Unveiled just last week, the pantry and eating area where employees congregate for lunch and breaks were given a facelift. Complete with new coffee machines from the eco-friendly, local Chesapeake Bay Roasting Company, a shiny new fridge, high-tech filtered water and ice dispenser, as well as a vending machine stocked with natural, healthy, organic treats. Rumor is that fresh fruits and yogurt will be added to the vending options soon! Oh, and did I mention a flat-screen TV?

The availability of healthy food, a cozy atmosphere and an occasional glance at CNBC during downtime at work are just some of the benefits of this update for employees. Focusing on what employees value is just one aspect of a healthy workplace, but one with a positive impact and high returns. Plus, helping employees make healthier decisions when it comes to food can have a larger impact on their overall health.

Although it may seem counterintuitive to the current trend of budget restrictions to offer employees perks, when employees feel valued, they perform better and creative ideas percolate. And with an office building full of psychologists and employees who work with psychologists, the sense of feeling valued by your employer is important.

Healthy options that appeal to all, what’s not to like? At the unveiling of the updated pantry, one colleague (who shall remain nameless!) inquired where to find soda among all the healthy offerings. The answer? Soda pops are now located on the next floor up, the stairs are right around the corner. This particular space was designed with health and wellness in mind with the goal of helping to make it easier for employees to make healthier decisions and shape their behavior. So it’s not that employees won’t be able to find soda if they want it, it’s that they’ll need to take an extra step to get to it, thus hopefully getting some exercise in the process, or opting for water instead.

And with a coffee maker so high tech that it grinds the beans to make a true espresso shot for each delicious cup and has a button for a super frothy cappuccino, I may never leave the office for a coffee run again.

Photo Credit: Jessica Peterson

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Jessica McKenzie, MS published on March 4, 2013 5:19 PM.

Work Life Merge: Running Your Family Like a Business was the previous entry in this blog.

Pre-Conference Training: Best Practices in Critical Incident Response for the Workplace is the next entry in this blog.

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