Blowing Hot or Cold?

Peace in Our Time – the media strikes again.

What makes a news story worthy of a phone in on the radio, endless column inches in the written media and television roving reporters on scene to report to us all? Is it a major incident involving a threat to the country, a significant development in the political landscape that will affect all of us? No it is the fact that Men and Women have different metabolisms and there is a war brewing over the air conditioning, men often complain of being too hot and woman too cold……..! Well it must be a slow news time because this piece of news has been known to building services engineers for generations.

In my role of advising clients on building performance and improving the productivity of their building environments I often ask the question about corporate policy on heating and cooling. Quite often there is an ambiguous statement around “we control the temperature to 22 degrees centigrade” or something similar, which leads me to ask bigger questions, which are more difficult to answer. What are the optimum conditions to have in this space to achieve the most productive output? How is this communicated to your people? How do you prevent these settings from being overridden? Who is responsible for overall control?

When we get down to the nitty gritty of what the building space has been designed for, I often find that we need to design specific conditions for multiple areas and an ambiguous policy on heating and cooling is not effective in the real world. These need to be communicated and maintained effectively to ensure that the conditions are at their optimum to encourage productivity and performance for both sexes. This will help to avoid the looming national crisis that may see the reintroduction of rationing, conscription, black out blinds, air raid sirens, people living in fear and the political rhetoric that stirs us all. OK, so the previous point may be a little tongue in cheek, but if you listen to the media coverage then it is not too big a stretch!

The organisations and people that LCMB have worked with do have effective policies that are effectively communicated and are maintained to ensure that they are getting the most productive environments across their estates and this is being achieved whilst meeting their environmental and corporate responsibility targets. I like to think of LCMB as the United Nations for the built environment.

Contact me at LCMB if you’d like to explore how we can make your buildings more productive and make your space work for both for your male and female colleagues, or visit our website to identify which mediation services meet your organisations needs!



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