Sleeping at work helps prevent burnout

Sleeping at work helps prevent burnout

International Sleep Day on 16 March

Healthy sleeping has been linked to workplace performance as well as the prevention of burnout. A survey by startup Sleepability with +100 Belgians finds that two out of three people believe that their company should help employees to sleep better.

A recent survey, conducted by startup Sleepability, found that 67% of people think that their company should help them to sleep better. Over half of respondents would like to nap at work and yet only 3% regularly do so. Feeling judged by colleagues is a commonly perceived barrier to napping at work and yet only 3% said they would mind if their colleagues took a 20-minute power nap.

It’s time to fight insidious sleep deprivation, which not only affects people’s productivity at work but also health and relationships, thinks Dot Zacharias, Founder of Sleepability, a start-up that improves the sleep of employees to increase well-being and productivity.

Nap rooms are a good way to help employees rest during the day. Sleepability nap rooms have been shown to improve afternoon well-being and productivity by 41%. “Our findings confirm that napping really makes a difference to a person’s overall health and productivity at work”.

Dr Mark Oblin, occupational physician at MENSURA, says that “the lack of energy, tiredness, difficulties of concentration will be marked, in particular, by a lack of performance and / or errors in the work. Relationships between colleagues may be disrupted as well. Finding back a healthy sleep hygiene is essential. In this perspective, a short period of deep relaxation in the middle of a working day can only be beneficial.”

Sleepability top tips for creating a healthy work environment for sleep:

  1. Communication curfews. It’s not only stressful to receive emails late at night but also to arrive at work with emails from your boss waiting for you already.

  2. Quiet room. It’s really important that there is a space in the office where people can go and lie down comfortably and not be disturbed. You don’t know what’s going on in people’s lives and sometimes we really need a proper break during the day. It’s the employer’s responsibility to ensure that is available to staff.

  3. Flexible hours. Some people are ‘owls’ and some people are ‘larks’. Today’s society favours the larks who arrive early at work and are productive during working hours. The Owls on the other hand get a bad reputation, whilst they are genetically designed to sleep and be productive at different times.

  4. Sleep coach. It’s useful to have a sleep coach on call in case any of your team show signals of sleep deprivation, temporary or long term. Fixing the problem early on can prevent a slippery slope towards physical or mental health problems.

  5. Coffee alternatives. Coffee is an addictive drug and has a terrible effect on our sleep patterns. Help your employees make better choices by offering them good alternatives, such as herbal tea or fresh fruit juices.


About Sleepability
Sleepability, a Start it @KBC backed company, founded by Dot Zacharias and Chiara Moncada, improves the sleep of employees to increase well-being and productivity. Services include team building workshops, pop-up nap rooms and sleep risk analysis. Their training programmes are founded on principles of Integrative Sleep Coaching and Yoga Nidra. They work with Nidra teachers, including Kamini Desai, a leading Yoga Nidra teacher in the US and author of Yoga Nidra: The Art of Transformational Sleep.



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About Start it @KBC

Start it @KBC supports and promotes entrepreneurs with innovative ideas and scalable business models. As such, it is Belgium’s largest community of start-ups. As a pioneer in Belgium, Start it @KBC aims to have a positive impact on the country’s economy and society. 

 For their first 3 months at Start it @KBC, start-ups join a strong, tailor-made accelerator programme while continuing to profit from top-notch mentorship, diverse expertise, an extensive international network and an inspiring co-working space for a period of 18 months. Start it @KBC continuously adapts its programme in co-creation with its start-ups.  

One of Start it @KBC’s key objectives is to stimulate (international) cross-pollination between more than 700 start-ups and scale-ups but also amongst investors, experienced mentors, experts from a wide variety of domains (technology, sales, legal, marketing, communication, etc.) and other global accelerators and incubators. The community also plays a leading role in promoting diversity and female entrepreneurship. 

Start it @KBC also has a clear international vision. In addition to hubs in Antwerp, Brussels, Ghent, Hasselt, Leuven, Kortrijk and Budapest, the community also includes a presence in New York. As of 2017, Start it @KBC has been a member of the Global Accelerator Network (GAN), a select network of 120 global accelerator programmes, offering extra opportunities for start-ups on the international stage and up to 1 million dollars’ worth of exclusive advantages from technology partners.

Via the Start it @KBC’s Corporate Incubation Program, start-up teams within large companies have also been able to transform innovative ideas into fully-fledged businesses under the guidance of Start it @KBC. 

Start it @KBC began in 2014 as a partnership between AccentureCronos GroepFlanders DCimecjoynKBCMobile VikingsTelenet Kickstart, University of Antwerp and local academic partners. 

Start-ups can apply to the programme at any time via the website The selected founders are then invited to pitch their idea to a professional jury at two pitch events per year, after which a new batch of start-ups begin their entrepreneurial journey at Start it @KBC. 

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