Standing Desks: Can They Improve Productivity?

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Staying on your feet and active has always been popular away from work, but many may not know that it pays to stand up at work as well. Just ask a few former presidents and UK prime ministers who used standing desks. More of creative type? Follow the lead of the authors of The Sun Also Rises, To the Lighthouse and A Tale of Two Cities.

That’s right. Famous authors like Ernest Hemingway, Virginia Woolf and Charles Dickens as well as well-renowned leaders Winston Churchill and Thomas Jefferson used standing desks at work to stay productive. Even today, it’s popular at many companies, including the likes of Facebook.

Why stand when it’s more comfortable to sit? Staying in shape isn’t the only reason. As it turns out, a recent study by the Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Public Health shows the desk can help adults stay more productive.

The study showed employees who were allowed to raise and lower their desks sat 1.6 hours less every day and were 46% more productive than those required to stay seated during a hard day’s work. Another plus – standing employees suffer from fewer aches and pains. There’s also the more emotional or human element to all this – the fact that sitting at a desk all day can be boring and unengaging.

[tweetthis hashtag=”StandUpAtWork”]#Employees do more when they can #StandUpAtWork. #Productivity[/tweetthis]

Remove the Desk Chains


Skeptical of the benefits of standing at work? We understand where you’re coming from. It seems odd employees would want to stand up at work instead of relaxing and staying comfortable. Plus, standing desks add another capital expense to companies that might already be strapped for cash. But when you’re increasing worker productivity and well-being, it could very well be worth the investment.

Take the classic image of an employee sitting in a cubicle. For many employees, sitting at a desk with walls on all but one side is the subject of satirical films that can very quickly become the stuff of nightmares. There’s always the chance your employees may feel like they’re trapped. That’s not ideal.


Standing Desks: An Alternative to Working from Home

Employee happiness is a top priority for any company in today’s competitive marketplace. Some companies turn to work from home programs to boost retention. But understandably, many companies may be skeptical and concerned that “work from home” is really “work on couch with the TV on and a hand in the cookie jar.”

If you’re worried about telecommuting programs but want to boost employee happiness, standing desks can be a fantastic alternative. The studies have shown it can improve productivity and employee comfort in the office. It helps to make work a happier and healthier place for employees to be.

Have you experimented with standing desks at work? Tell us your stories on Twitter – add in the hashtag #StandUpAtWork.

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