Startups have been known for their “trendy” offices with pool tables, foosball tables, bean bags and even sleeping pods for years. While many people believe these little “bonuses” in the work environment to be excessive and even pretentious, there is a truck load of solid evidence out there to suggest these little perks are well worth it.

Here’s 5 reasons why your office should have a pool table / foosball table / sleeping pod.

1. It makes your employees happy

As we all know, happy workers are productive workers and there’s no shortage of research to back that up. People who are happy in their work environments are more motivated and more productive than those who aren’t. Fact.

Having a pool table in your office will give your employees something fun to do on their breaks, which in turn will make them happier in their work and therefore more productive. It’s a win win situation.

2. It will show your team you care

If you want your best employees to stay with you, you’re going to have to show them you care.

“In today’s world, the key to wealth is often the employees’ knowledge. In this world, the company may need knowledge workers far more than knowledge workers need the company. They know far more about what they are doing than their bosses do.” – Bloomberg

Giving your employees something fun to do on their breaks shows them that you care and that you believe they should be rewarded for their hard work.

3. Your eyes will thank you

If your employees are staring at a screen all day, they’re more likely to suffer eye strain, upper limb problems and fatigue on a daily basis.

The Health and Safety Executive recommend the following tips for your employees breaks:

  • Make sure to stretch and change position
  • Look at distant objects from time to time and blink often
  • Take a break before you get tired, rather than to recover
  • Take short, frequent breaks

A game of pool every few hours ticks all these boxes, leaving your employees refreshed and ready to go as well as reducing the health risks associated with working with computers.

4. Your team will become stronger

A quick game of pool gives your employees a chance to build relationships one on one. Getting to know each other better will make it easier for your team to approach each other for help and support each other.

Research by Tom Rath, author of Vital Friends: The People You Can’t Afford to Live Without, found that people who have a best friend at work are seven times more likely to be engaged with work and that close friendships at work boost employee satisfaction by almost 50%.

5. It will make them more productive

Contrary to what a lot of managers might believe, taking regular breaks will actually help you get more work done.

The New York Times explain why here:

“Mental concentration is similar to a muscle, says John P. Trougakos, an assistant management professor at the University of Toronto Scarborough and the Rotman School of Management. It becomes fatigued after sustained use and needs a rest period before it can recover, he explains – much as a weight lifter needs rest before doing a second round of repetitions at the gym.”

Do you have a pool table or something else fun in your break-out space? Tell us about it in the comments.

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