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Offices may soon blast employees with cold air if they start slacking off

Tell nana to start knitting, because you might need to start wearing gloves at work.

That’s because new “smart” offices are set to start using a blast of icy air to help employees beat the afternoon slump.

It seems kind of slack, considering the amount of research being done about sleep, that the best solution for sleepiness at work is apparently a quick, freezing breeze.

According to the world’s largest air conditioning manufacturer, Daikin Industries, personalised air conditioning for office workers will cure the inevitable after-lunch energy slump. When the smart technology senses you losing concentration, it will simply freeze you out of your reverie.

Though the convenience that Daikin found air conditioning is the answer does not escape notice, their idea is evidence-based. Their research indicates that lowering the temperature of the environment for several minutes can decrease sleepiness when compared to other methods.

That said, other methods mentioned by The Wall Street Journal in their article outlining Daikin’s findings include similarly offending the senses by sniffing strongly scented plants or cranking up the brightness of the lights.

Other methods, like going for a brisk walk outside or taking a 10-minute power nap, seem to be unpopular with employers despite research suggesting that they’re likely to be quite effective. Doesn’t a world in which people, when tired, are slapped awake by an omniscient wintry gust instead of being afforded a quick kip seems like an unnecessarily hostile place?

In general, smart offices are a great idea. They make your space specific to the individuals within them and adjust the environment to their needs. This seems like a no-brainer for boosting productivity.

But the chilly alternative to nap time might not hit the right mark. Unfortunately, we’ll have to wait until 2020, when the product is set to launch, to determine whether inflicting artic blasts on employees is truly effective at beating sleep, or just incites universal feelings of rage and increases the incidence of sick days.

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