There’s another gender gap that’s dividing the workplace these days, and it revolves around the office thermostat.
A new survey from CareerBuilder confirms what anyone who works in an office already knows: Men and women experience temperature differently.
While just 13 percent of men report being too cold at work, 31 percent of women feel chilly in the office. Meanwhile, 28 percent of men say that they’re too hot in the office, compared to 22 percent of women.
“It’s impossible to change the thermostat to something that pleases everybody,” says Rosemary Haefner, CareerBuilder’s chief human resource officer. “But what you can do is look at what employees need to be productive and accommodate where you can.”
The study found that office temperatures can impact worker productivity, with 71 percent of employees saying that warm temperatures had a negative impact on their work; 51 percent said the same thing about a cold environment.
Women were more likely than men to be negatively affected by the temperature. The top actions taken by workers hoping to keep warm in the office during winter were wearing layers (44 percent), drinking hot beverages (36 percent), and wearing a jacket all day (31 percent).
Discomfort at work can also lead to disputes between employees. One in five workers has argued with a coworker about the thermostat setting, and 18 percent have secretly changed the temperature.