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Can coffee bring happiness to the office

Although the United Kingdom is nowhere to be found in the list of countries with the biggest coffee consumption, the idea of having an in-house coffee bar in the office is becoming more popular. 

Northern Europeans consume the largest volume of coffee per person per year, according to International Coffee Organisation. Finland takes the top spot, consuming almost 12kg of coffee per person per year, followed by Nordic neighbours Norway, Iceland, Denmark and Sweden in the top ten. However, the United Kingdom is nowhere to be seen even in top 20, perhaps due to the country’s stereotypical, but very real, love of tea. In the Euromonitor statistics, the UK came third globally in a list of biggest tea drinkers. Despite Brits not being globally recognized as coffee drinkers, increasingly more and more companies are welcoming professional baristas into their offices.

Happiness in the workplace is a hot topic at the moment and it is becoming more widely understood that to thrive in a new world of work, companies need to ensure their office spaces allow employees to feel empowered, fulfilled and engaged at work. Providing coffee bars and collaborative spaces where people can meet, drink and relax is no longer just a feature in the offices of the Twitter, Google or LinkedIns of the world as people begin to think creatively about how their office real estate can be used to get the most from their employees. However, as DeJeana Chappell, Senior Associate in JLL’s Workplace Strategy Team in the USA notes, there is still some way to go as a large number of companies still believe in presenteeism – the notion that people are only productive if they’re sat at their desks.

Lets meet for a coffee

Coffee bars have become recognised as places to work over the past years thanks to the provision of free WiFi, availability of power supply at tables, a space which provides both a quiet place to work and a collaborative space to bounce ideas around, and the variety of food and drink on offer.

Corporates which recognise that their employees benefit from a change of scenery from time to time and work better in certain situations in different spaces are reaping the rewards. Areas of the office with a buzzing atmosphere can inspire creativity and private booths work for informal meetings.

And incorporating new types of space, whether caffeinated or not, breeds better collaboration, engagement and productivity amongst employees.