Friday Link: the secret to productivity is the free food

Interesting article on Slate today, on Idiotic Corporate Penny-Pinching …

“Such coffee cutbacks aren’t just petty, they’re self-defeating. Companies get a lot of bang for the buck by providing coffee—a legal drug that keeps employees pepped up. Workers, including this one, need caffeine to get through the day. Get up from your desk, go to the nearest coffee place, and return. Now repeat. That’s how much time a company loses by not providing company joe. On my first day on the job at Bloomberg 14 years ago, I was surprised and pleased to find not just coffee but the entire contents of a convenience store on offer, gratis. The reason? Billionaire Mike Bloomberg didn’t want people leaving the building to get coffee, cookies, or anything else they needed to keep them going on his dime.”

Sure, there are some new perks coming… many we pay for and fine by me as a shareholder. Bloomberg paved the way on keeping up productivity, and many companies realize that it’s good business and boosts employee morale

“Like employees at overgrown startups Google and Yahoo!, Facebook exudes a “Let’s stay in tonight,” vibe–all three companies offer its employees some type of laundry service, and Google and Yahoo! programmers and executives often prefer to eat in their posh corporate cafeterias than venture out.”

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