Generation Z employees worry that taking a lunch break makes them look bad

We’ve all heard the old saying, “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day,” but many experts believe lunch is the most important, as it energizes your body during the middle of the day, increasing your energy and productivity. Unfortunately, many Generation Z professionals do not take their lunch breaks, and this affects their performance.

In April, ezCater, a business catering company, surveyed 1,000 workers across the United States, from various industries, to analyze lunch patterns for today’s workforce. Their report found that 78% of workers believe that having a lunch break improves their productivity at work. However, 1 in 10 employees does not take a break from their desk. Seventy percent of workers also eat while they work at least once a week, eliminating that much-needed recovery time.

“[Lunch breaks] Help clear your mind,” Diane Swint, ezCater’s chief order officer, told CNBC Make it. Whether you work at home, or you work in a factory line, you need to take a break and check your energy. ”

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For Generation Z workers, lunch break hesitation is most prevalent, due to overwork, “lunch bloat,” and bad examples from higher-ups in their company.

Workaholic problems

A recurring theme among the younger generation of workers is that their workload exceeds the actual working day. Twenty-one percent of Gen Z’ers tell ezCater that they don’t have enough time in their day to get their work done if they take a break. Nineteen percent of Generation Z professionals say they have too many meetings during their lunch hour, and 27% say they avoid breaks altogether to finish the workday as quickly as possible.

“I think there’s a false sense that if you work directly, you’ll be more productive,” says Swint. “There is a need to reframe a holistic approach to how creative and innovative you are in the work you do. I think sometimes that means you need to be slower to go faster.”

Swint believes that getting rid of workaholic cultures can allow people to “work smart so they don’t have to work so hard.” It can also help boost employee relationships by allowing for more collaboration and socializing during lunch, which many people have missed in virtual environments after the pandemic.

“Maybe you usually start like, on Thursdays, make sure everyone has lunch… get the team together. In this Zoom world, we are used to these relationships at a very transactional level. Sometimes, if you have a greater understanding of who your co-worker is You have more awareness, and you will be able to collaborate faster and more effectively.”

Anti “lunch bulge”

Inflation not only affects society, but it infiltrates our workplaces. Many employees find office lunches expensive, and General Zers makes the most money. According to ezCater’s According to the report, 67% of Generation Z workers spend at least $11 on ordering lunch. With 43% of workers buying lunch three to five times a week, young professionals may spend as much as $50 a week, causing many to skip lunch altogether.

Since June 2021, the cost of groceries has increased by 12.2%, and the cost of food in general has increased by 10.4%, including restaurants and fast food. The median salary for Generation Z workers is $667 per week, and the median rent in the United States is $1,876, leaving young adults about $792 before taxes to deal with monthly expenses such as utilities, transportation, insurance, student debt, phone bills, food, and other necessities .

Swint believes that companies should consider adding Free lunch days in the office to show employee appreciation, encourage lunch breaks, and even get more workers back into the office.

“You don’t need to do these huge, bulky programs, it can be simple. She says, I see you, I want you to take a break, I appreciate what you’re doing.”

The executives set the pace