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Office Research Round-Up, September 2009, Part One

By on September 22, 2009 in Office Workers

Ostentatious football enthusiasm can be detrimental to career prospects

According to a study of 900 senior managers commissioned by executive recruitment firm, TheLadders.co.uk, overt football fanaticism, such as wearing a kit to work or posting team pics at your workstation, can “relegate” your career prospects. Supporting a football team different from your boss’s can also pose problems.

Derek Pilcher, managing director of The Ladders, said: “A healthy football interest can create good banter with your colleagues and peers. It is a good way for you to build interpersonal relationships. If the boss supports the same team, it is OK to discuss a bit but do be careful.

“Too much football discussion can cause distractions and reduce productivity. If you’re overheard more than five minutes discussing one match, peers may think you are not serious about your career.”

Fags, lazing about, skipping fruit/veg weaken memory

A study of 5,123 UK male and female civil service office workers over a period of 17 years has shown that the more unhealthy behaviours engaged in, the greater the “risk of cognitive deficit.” Dr. Severine Sabia, of Hopital Paul Brousse in Villejuif, France, and fellow researchers surveyed health behaviors of civil service office workers in London, UK, when they were 44 (early-midlife), 56 (midlife), and 61 (late-midlife) years old.”

Adults who accumulated the most versus the least number of unhealthy behaviours were nearly three times more likely to show poor thinking skills, and about two times more likely to have declining memory. After allowing for other factors such as socioeconomic status, the researchers found that current smokers are more likely to show the lowest memory, verbal, and math-related thinking and reasoning skills at each lifestage survey.

Office too hot/cold, moan workers

The most common complaints of workers in their offices relate to temperature, according to a survey of IMFA members in Canada and the US. Ninety-four per cent reported “Too cold” complaints, with 91% citing “Too hot” moans.

Universal UK connectivity may trigger mass employee migration

100% availability of reliable and fast universal UK broadband access could herald dramatic regional population changes as people are allowed more flexibility to live and work in a place of their own choosing, according to the latest ‘Connected Britain’ report from Orange UK. The report is based on a YouGov survey of 3,281 office workers from the UK and incorporates insights from futurologist James Bellini.

The South West of England could see a 150% population increase by 2015. London and Scotland would see rises of 50% and 40% respectively while other areas like the East and West Midlands and parts of the North could see sharp decreases.

Said Bellini: “As connectivity across Britain increases, so too will mobile working, making the traditional office almost obsolete. In fact, by 2020, a successful and forward-looking business will have no HQ, probably no CEO and only a fraction of the fixed assets it has today.”

Judging by appearances…

Recearch by recruitment agency, Office Angels, has suggested a significant chunk of office workers judge their colleagues by their clothes. Two-fifths (39%) of the 1,000 workers interviewed assessed their colleagues’ wardrobes and made judgements about them. A quarter (26%) admitted to making judgements about their colleagues’ personalities and a fifth (19%) about their work ethic by the clothes they wear.

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