How Temperature Affects Productivity Output

graph with temperature affecting your productivity

As I walk through the streets of Buenos Aires, meandering nonchalantly like a fly in winter, I thought about the concept of productivity and temperature. Specifically, their correlation.

Why is it that cities that have seasons or are in colder temperatures tend to be larger, have more companies, more business, and more wealth?

But if the summer heat slowed me down so much, then my theory about different seasons didn’t hold. Then I thought about air conditioning. I decided to look up the effect on temperature and productivity, to which I found a lot of information.

For example 1/3 of participants in a CareerBuilder survey said their productivity was affected by temperature. If an office is too hot or too cold, it’s practically impossible to concentrate. I found the same when traveling in Central America. Even if the WiFi was working, all you could think of was the beach and fast-melting ice cream.

Below is a productivity graph from productivity-science.com.

As you can see, the productivity changes significantly and highest performance achieved in relatively short peak between 70° F (21° C) and  73° (23° C). Outside 63° F (17° C) and 82° F (28° C) temperature range the productivity decreases more than 5% and significantly impacts on workers ability to work and even can influence health”

This makes sense now, as I searched for a place with air conditioning to help dry my sweat and allow me to concentrate. So I were in the perfect temperature all along…

Temperature and Productivity graphic

4 Comments on “How Temperature Affects Productivity Output”

  1. Avatar

    I agree with you completely. Temperature matters allot. I used to work continuously even for 12 hours with few mins gap if everything is fine but I can’t sit more than 45 mins during hot weather. Used to feel like jumping to a swimming pool rather than working. So yeah Air condition is very much important and it can over come the temp-productivity issue.

  2. Avatar

    I agree, this makes total sense! I tend to feel less productive when it’s too warm but I get to accomplish a lot when the temperature is comfortable. It’s summer in my country now and I have to turn on the air conditioner from time to time so I can also work well.

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