Anyone who has ever had meetings, University assignments or simply worked on a collaborative project will understand that you’re only as strong as your weakest link.
Well, if this study is to be believed, then simply drinking coffee in groups actually enhances the productivity, and therefore the success of groups of working/studying people.
Like any study of it’s kind, we’d say take this information with a pint of salt (yes, a full pint), as surely group dynamics, subject matter and a whole plethora of other factors need to be considered for a study to make such a bold claim!
The University of California, Davis were the lead investigators and are claiming to the very first educational or research institution to study the effect of coffee on group interaction
Group performance was said to have a benefitted from the intake of coffee by individuals in groups, this is down to a number of factors.
Approximately 70 U.S. university students were divided into smaller groups: one being given coffee 30 minutes prior to a group discussion on the “occupy” movement, the other group was given coffee after the discussion had finished.
Preliminary results showed that the groups that consumed coffee before this meeting had more focused and subject relevant discussion, an overall increased member engagement percentage and a better perception of their own input and participation.
Some might instantly think: “But, the caffeine is to explain for that change!”
Well, to ascertain whether the caffeine was the main component in this boost, the researchers served independent groups, decaf coffee and standard.
They found that the group who had the caffeinated coffee performed better than those that had the decaffeinated coffee before a group discussion.
That’s not to say that the decaf group didn’t achieve anything, the consumption of coffee sans caffeine meant the group were still more productive than the control group who consumed no coffee whatsoever.
Whilst we can’t say this is explicit confirmation that you need to be serving coffee before or during your next business meeting or group project, we’re thinking that maybe theirs just enough of a nugget of evidence that this could help you a) be more productive and b) get a caffeine boost right when you need it most.