By Matt Shealy

In a perfect world, only our employees’ skills and their willingness to give their all would affect how they perform at their job.

But we all know this isn’t how the world works. Factors like stress, work/life balance and of course sleep all have a direct link to productivity. In fact, it isn’t just that more attentive people do better work – it is well documented that sleep deprivation leads to productivity losses.

When a person is less rested, they’re less alert and in many cases, less capable. Let’s take an in-depth look at the relation between sleep and job performance.

3 Ways to Analyze Sleep’s Impact on Employee Productivity

1. The Financial Aspect

Time is money, right? If that’s true, time spent tired is time spent less efficiently than it could’ve been. But how can you attach a financial figure to the issue of sleep deprivation in the workplace? Think in terms of hourly productivity, and then factor in how “slowed” a worker may be.

If a worker is paid $20 per hour, they’re expected to generate that as a minimum for their employer. But if they’re moving say, 20 percent slower because of sleep deprivation, that’s a max of $16 worth of productivity. Sleepier workers approach tasks slower, and they simply don’t operate at their optimal skill level.

2. The Morale Aspect

While money is the name of the game in the workplace, there’s also the issue of employee morale. People work better when they like their job and feel like they’re making a difference. High morale means higher productivity, so the opposite is also true.

People who don’t have the energy to enjoy and focus in on what they’re doing will be less motivated, and Barret Rose estimates this could cost the economy billions per year.

3. The Opportunity Aspect

Doing a great job in the workplace is about seeing opportunities and capitalizing on them. But when a person doesn’t have adequate sleep, it is easy to miss these opportunities.

They could include:

  • A product/service suggestion
  • Turning a lead into a customer
  • Turning a customer into a promoter
  • Upselling an existing customer
  • Finding out exactly what a customer wants

All of these instances are opportunities for the worker to help customers and benefit the workplace as a whole. But when a person is fighting the urge to dose off during the day, it is easy to miss these chances.

The only question left is – how can a person ensure they have enough sleep to face the day?

The Effect of Adequate Sleep on Worker Productivity

When workers are well-rested, everything changes. They can utilize all their skills, maximize every opportunity presented to them, and reach higher levels of overall productivity.

It’s not just the sleep you get at night that can alter your performance. Taking naps during the day can also lead to greater productivity. reports that Winston Churchill took a nap almost every day. Churchill wrote, “You must sleep sometime between lunch and dinner, and no halfway measures. Take off your clothes and get into bed. That’s what I always do. Don’t think you will be doing less work because you sleep during the day. That’s a foolish notion held by people who have no imaginations. You will be able to accomplish more. You get two days in one — well, at least one and a half.”

With good sleep hygiene, it is possible to get the sleep we need to be fully functional in all aspects of life including our job. The result is more ROI, improved morale, and a better overall experience.

Matt Shealy is the President of Chamber specializes in helping small businesses grow their business on the web while facilitating the connectivity between local businesses and more than 7,000 Chambers of Commerce worldwide.

Tired worker stock photo by Roman Samborskyi/Shutterstock