The Cold (Office) War

We’re all familiar with the pitfalls of modern temperature control. If you’ve worked in an office for any amount of time, you’ve undoubtedly seen the fallout – coworkers huddled over their desks, barely visible beneath sweaters and blankets, clutching their third cup of coffee not because they’re tired but because their fingers are icicles.

Having been there ourselves, b + c office interiors has some tips we’re pretty sure you’ll warm up to.

1. Let’s Be Friends

If you’re unable to control the temperature in your office suite for any number of reasons, bring the issue up to whoever does, which is most likely the building manager. It seems pretty obvious, but you’d be surprised at how many people think they just have to power through the shivers.

Send your building manager a friendly email or give them a call. It’s possible no one has mentioned it to them so they didn’t know you had to employ penguins instead of people.

Appeal to their humanity and tell them poor Janet in accounting is floating away on an iceberg. Or if they’re more analytical-minded, quote the Cornell Study that states warmer temperatures lead to better productivity and fewer employee typing errors. If all else fails, remind them how much money they could save if they raise the temperature just a few degrees.

Oh, and don’t forget to thank your building manager once you’ve thawed out. They’ll appreciate it. 

2. Play Musical Chairs

Not all the time, of course. But if your desk is directly under a vent and you’re bundled up like it’s the Ice Age, see if you can switch stations with someone who might welcome the draft. 

3. I Have So Many Layers, I Might as Well Be an Onion

If you can’t solve the problem, you’ll have to find a way to make it work for you. While it might not look the most professional to be bundled up in a wool sweater or burritoed in a blanket, your chilly coworkers will understand. 

4. Bring on the Heat

If your office doesn’t allow personal space heaters for safety reasons, fear not. There are some non-electric alternatives that won’t burn the place down if left unattended.

I’ve used those mini hand and feet warmers while skiing and they’re surprisingly effective. If they can defrost my perpetually cold hands after I dropped my gloves in the snow, they’ll definitely work in the office.

You might laugh at this one, but again...I’m speaking from personal experience. When I lived in England, our house was drafty and damp, and I wasn’t sure I’d last the winter without hibernating. Until a friend suggested a hot water bottle. They aren’t as popular in the US, which is a shame, but you can buy them on Amazon for about $10, and with a cute fleece or knit cover those puppies will stay hot for a while. It was honestly one of my best purchases. 


5. Start a Parade

Even if it’s just a one-person parade (i.e. you) marching around the office. You could probably use a break from staring at the computer and the brief exercise will invigorate you. Plus, you’ll bump into coworkers, which many offices are now encouraging in order to spark discussions that could lead to innovations.

Or, if you work with enthusiastic, celebratory people, you could actually start a parade. Might even turn into a fun new office tradition.