Finance News & Insights

Eating in the cube: Dangers of workers skipping lunch

Take a look around your office at lunchtime. If there are more than a few workers scarfing down microwaveable lunches in their cubes, you may have some problems on your hands.

Why? Many times, employees who take lunch breaks in their cubes are so overworked that they don’t feel like they have enough time to take a proper lunch.

But far from having a positive effect, skipping lunch breaks can hurt employees’ health, productivity and even quality of work.

Skipping — or shortening — lunch is a  large-scale problem. In fact, a recent survey by the Energy Group found that the average worker takes less than 20 minutes for lunch each day.

To encourage your Finance department to take full advantage of their lunch break, try holding department lunches every few weeks.

Also, the Energy Group has rolled out the Take Back Your Lunch campaign — where workers sign-up to attend lunch meet-ups in public parks throughout the country. The program takes place each Wednesday throughout the summer.

Readers, do you take full breaks for lunch or spend that time eating in your cube, desk, office, etc.? Let us know in the Comments section.

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  • Carole Hatfield

    Ours is a small office. We have a dining area and most of us eat lunch together each day. We also have dishes and silver ware, a dishwasher as well as a microwave. The majority bring their lunch, which is usually healthier as well as less expensive. We take turns answering the phone if needed.

    This gives everyone a chance to talk together, both business and personal, and improves morale. All of us share in the upkeep of the kitchen area, clean as you go is the key. The dishwasher makes everything very easy.

  • R. B.

    I’m guilty. I never take lunch. I work a minimum of 9-1/2 hours straight through every day. Sometimes I get more done during lunch than at other times because there are fewer interruptions. I have to admit, by the time that 9th hour rolls around, I’m getting pretty tired. But if I didn’t work through lunch, I would have to stay later at night, I would be even more tired and I wouldn’t have much of a life at all. It’s kind of a trade-off…

  • Vi

    I only take a lunch if I leave the office. It’s funny because I’m also seen as not having enough work to do by others in our company. We don’t have a break room so most of us eat in our offices and sometimes it’s just easier to skip lunch. I used to read alot during my lunch but if I’m in my office people will also say “Oh I’m sorry but can I just ask you a quick question?” and then proceed to take up the rest of my lunch time so it isn’t worth even taking time for one.

  • I am guilty of not taking lunch at least once a week. I do eat in my cube sometimes because I have homework to do and the lunchroom is usually too noisy. However, I do try to make it down to the lunchroom a 2-3 times a week and take my full hour lunch just to take a break from work.