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Feb 28, 2013 by Vanessa Fiorido in Project Management 101 & Tools

4 Reasons a Good Cup of Coffee Makes a Productive Project Manager

coffee

Inspired by McDonald’s ongoing free coffee campaign and Tim Horton’s roll-up the rim, this post is for all you project managers out there who can’t function without their morning java (or the 3 more that come after).

We’ve all heard the bad things about excessive caffeine intake, and we’ve certainly heard enough excessive praise for the wonders of green tea, but if you are like me, you can’t imagine surviving a day at work without coffee. Thankfully, this isn’t such a bad thing for you as a project manager.

If the barista at Starbucks knows your name and order, and you receive daily teasing from your coworkers about your “caffeine addiction”, rest assured that your daily coffee consumption has several productivity pluses.

Sit back with your espresso and enjoy the surprising scientific top 4 workplace productivity benefits of coffee.

1. Coffee improves your mood

Let’s face it, projects don’t always go according to plan. A good project manager needs to be able to roll with the punches, and stay positive in the face of impending doom. Scope change? Deal with it. Project delays? Time to play catch-up. Not enough budget? Must get creative. With ever-evolving projects, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. But it looks like coffee is a good way to battle the stress and stay positive.

Studies show, caffeine drinkers are better able to recognize words with positive meanings. Even better, caffeine plays no effect on improving one’s ability to process negative words. Seems like optimism and hope runs a little higher on project teams with coffee drinkers.

2. Coffee helps performance for repetitive tasks

All projects have those boring, but critical, tasks that must get done. While no one likes to do this work, coffee has been shown to increase productivity and efficiency for performing basic cognitive tasks. Your ability to quickly and efficiently complete those tedious but necessary project tasks increases after a cup of your favorite coffee brew.

3. Coffee aids memory

Even though, as a project manager, you should never rely on your memory, giving it a little boost never hurt anyone. For that, you can throw away those memory tricks you heard on The Mentalist, and instead just grab a cup of coffee. Research shows that coffee consumption actually aids short-term memory, so as long as you have your Starbucks by your side you will never forget you client’s first name again.

4. Coffee Increases Concentration

Hours can be long and hard in the midst of managing a big project, and keeping focus is often the key ingredient to hitting those dreaded deadlines. The caffeine in coffee increases action in the prefrontal lobe of your brain that deals with your ability to concentrate. In fact, caffeine has even been shown to help athletes increase their endurance for strenuous workouts. Since we all know project management is as demanding, and takes just as long as a marathon, it goes to show that a little coffee can help you make it to the finish.

Sip up that mocha PM power mix and enjoy your afternoon cup guilt-free.

What’s you favorite coffee chain? Favorite coffee brew? Hate coffee and love tea? Leave your comments below.

Image credit, Doug88888, Flickr

vanessa-fiorido
Vanessa Fiorido

Vanessa Fiorido watches a lot of YouTube at work. Sometimes she blogs about project management.

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