Helen Green

Taking the temperature of the business

With the hot weather set to continue into August the CBI is encouraging employers to take steps to help their people to stay cool at work*. Measures suggested include relaxing the dress code, offering more flexible working hours in order to move employees away from having to travel at peak commute times, and providing easy access to drinking water.

This last advice is echoed by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) in a reminder to all those dealing with the elderly or vulnerable. They also highlight the importance of keeping cool and considering how nutritional requirements can best be met in hot weather.

Under UK legislation there is no maximum temperature for workplaces. Nevertheless, it is at times like these that leaders who show genuine concern for the well-being of their people come to the fore. People who are too hot, who may be suffering from lack of a good night’s sleep, or even experiencing simple dehydration may not be able to work at their normal pace. Worse still, as the heat affects the ability to concentrate they may be more prone to making simple errors or slower to assimilate variations in tasks. Emphasising with these problems and taking steps to optimise working conditions could help to build a trusting relationship which will pay dividends in the long term.