The company has declared 2 pm to 2:30 pm as official nap time and hopes that napping won't be considered a sign of incompetence.
For as long we all can remember, dozing off at work was never acceptable. Employees who fall asleep at work are typically considered lazy and not serious about their work. Only employees who are not serious about their deadlines would dare get some shut-eye during working hours.
But a home and sleep solutions company based out of India has gone viral after announcing ‘Right to Nap’ policy for its employees. Under this policy, employees are encouraged to sleep for about half an hour while at work.
Wakefit, a company that manufactures mattresses and pillows rolled out ‘Right to Nap’ policy in May 2022, under which employees are encouraged to take a quick nap from 2 pm to 2:30 pm every day, according to Business Today.
"Following the recent rollout of our ‘Right to nap’ policy and the overwhelming response it garnered, we were thoroughly inspired and wanted to convert this policy into a movement to normalise afternoon naps at work," Prateek Malpani, head of brand, Wakefit.co said, per Financial Express. “With this take, we hope that the idea of napping at work isn’t looked down upon or considered a sign of incompetence," he added.
In an era of work from home policies, #Wakefit has claimed to be the first Indian company to announce a ‘right to nap’ policy for its employees between 2 to 2.30 PM during work hours. (@bismahmalik) https://t.co/IpaFvLTFWx— Business Today (@business_today) May 5, 2022
“An afternoon nap is instrumental in helping the body recharge and refocus on the task at hand, thus improving workplace productivity and motivation. Conversations around afternoon naps became predominant with the advent of work-from-home, and companies are slowly but steadily realising its importance. Through this initiative, the company hopes to start a sleep revolution while also encouraging other companies to adopt the initiative,” the company said in a statement.
#Wakefit #Napping Internet Applauds Company Paying Employees to Take Afternoon Naps: "I can proudly say I am getting paid to sleep at work!" said one of the company's employees https://t.co/Fm22Rds6Fb— Solomon Phoenix (@SolomonPhoenix_) May 5, 2022
“Research shows that afternoon naps help with memory, concentration, creativity, and productivity. A NASA study reveals that a 26-minute catnap can enhance performance by 33 per cent, while a Harvard study shows how naps prevent burnout."
In the statement, the Director and co-founder of Wakefit, Chaitanya Ramalingegowda went ahead to declare that the calendars of employees will be blocked between 2 pm to 2:30 pm as official nap time to normalize afternoon naps at work.
Stating that the aim of the initiative is to "focus on our employees' well-being, while also fostering a culture that strongly encourages self-care," he urged other brands to join in with similar employee-friendly policies "to promote a healthy lifestyle for their employees.”
While in India this may be one of the first experiments, it is quite common in Japan where napping in public is not just culturally accepted, it is often considered a sign of being diligent, according to The New York Times.
#Japanese even has a specific term for this sleeping-but-not-totally-sleeping state — inemuri #居眠り #Inemuri translates as “sleep while being present” Not to be confused with #hirune #昼寝 which translates as “daytime sleep,” or #napping, which would be intentional #flamingos pic.twitter.com/FZLsqRP76h— Freefra.Eu (@frafreefra) July 19, 2022
They even have a term for it—'inemuri'—which is often loosely translated as “sleeping on duty.” Brigitte Steger, a senior lecturer in Japanese studies at Downing College, Cambridge, in her book on the topic, said that it would be more accurate to consider it “sleeping while present.”
Inemuri is a tradition that has at least 1,000 years of history in Japan and is not just used in the workplace. People can take naps everywhere, including a quiet corner on a crowded downtown sidewalk, department stores, cafes, and restaurants.
Honestly, we can all do with some extra sleep!
Representative Cover Image Source: Getty Images | Cecilie_Arcurs