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5 Ways That Coffee Affects Productivity

Yes, we all love java. It gets us going in the morning. And the afternoon. And the evening. But is it really such a good idea?

Thomas Smale

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It’s not uncommon for employers and employees alike to reach for a caffeinated beverage when they need a bit of an energy boost. And while some might prefer to get their caffeine in the form of soda or an energy drink, the majority of consumers’ favorite mood-lifter is coffee itself.

That addiction is likely fueled by caffeine, which seems to have an impact on mental clarity and performance. The down side? Besides being addictive, caffeine can encourage weight gain and obesity.

But coffee has its plus side, too. First, we’re observing the growing popularity of bulletproof coffee, which of course is good for business and entrepreneurship. And, second, we’re also seeing that this popular beverage has been identified as an antioxidant.

So, overall, is coffee good for you? Does it truly increase productivity? Here are the issues to consider when you consider coffee.

1It improves mental performance and alertness

Medical writer Stephen Braun has said that caffeine blocks receptors for adenosine, a compound in your brain that causes drowsiness. This explains why many of us feel less tired when we consume coffee.

In low doses, caffeine also is said to improve mental performance and alertness. The caveat of course is that caffeine does not affect everyone the same way. Your personal response to caffeine could be vastly different from that of someone you know.

Related: Starbucks Coffee Is All About Culture… For A Reason

Other factors in your personal response include the dosage you consume, your weight and age and even the quality of your sleep. You should be aware that you can build up tolerance to caffeine over time, so one cup of coffee might not be enough to give you the same boost it used to.

In fact, some people don’t feel anything until they’ve downed two cups, though that may not be anything to brag about. It just means you’ve been hooked on caffeine a long time.

In shorter bursts, moreover, coffee can increase your cognitive functions, memory, alertness and energy. But as we all know, this effect can be short-lived, and you might crash later in the day.

2It can affect the quality of your sleep

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In smaller doses, caffeine should not affect your sleep schedule. But if you consume too much, you may find it harder to fall asleep at night. This can unfortunately create an unhealthy cycle of not sleeping enough, stressing out and performing poorly at work. A longer-range result may even be burnout or an anxiety attack.

Overuse of caffeine, moreover, can result in an upset stomach, the jitters or even heart palpitations.

There is a greater focus on sleep now than the past, fueled by conflicting viewpoints between the hustle mentality that entrepreneurs like Gary Vaynerchuk and Grant Cardone promote, and the opposing perspective set forward by the likes of James Altucher and Arianna Huffington.

Only you can decide what’s right for you, but either way, it’s good to be aware that your sleep can be negatively affected by caffeine. So, be aware that moderation in coffee consumption is your best choice.

3It may enhance your willpower

By now, it’s a foregone conclusion that your willpower is depleted throughout the day as you make decisions. This might be one of the reasons Steve Jobs was known to wear the same outfit every single day. He didn’t have to think about what he was going to wear when he got up in the morning, and was thus able to save willpower for bigger decisions.

As it turns out, coffee can strengthen your willpower and self-control, particularly when you’re exhausted. Making a big decision when you’re tired isn’t wise. You could end up compromising your values, succumbing to pressures in negotiations or taking on new projects at inopportune times.

Drinking coffee beforehand, however, may help you stand your ground and make better decisions. This is a good thing to keep in mind if you’ve had a busy day and still have important decisions to make.

Related: Why You Should Encourage Your Team to Take Even Decaf Coffee Breaks

4Drinking coffee at the wrong time will lead to increased blood pressure and adrenaline levels

drinking-coffee

Entrepreneurs are constantly facing new challenges and putting out fires. In business, a strong mentality is a prerequisite, but even the best people can become frazzled and stressed out. If this continues over the long haul, you could even burn out.

The tendency is to become even more reliant on coffee when you’re drained. As it turns out, this is the worst time to load up your body with caffeine, as it can result in elevated blood pressure and adrenaline levels. As we’ve already seen, caffeine blocks adenosine, so the buildup can suddenly come flooding in as you crash, making you feel even more tired.

This might sound innocent in and of itself, but it’s a good way to trigger a panic attack, and once activated, anxiety often must be managed over the long haul. You may even wind up with an anxiety disorder.

You don’t need more caffeine when you’re coping with high levels of stress, despite its overall benefits when you aren’t under extreme pressure.

5It can help you learn faster

Many entrepreneurs are prolific consumers of content, whether it’s articles and blog posts, magazines, trade journals, books, podcasts or videos. This information helps them make decisions, innovate and implement new ideas in their business.

Ongoing study requires focus and attention, which, like willpower, can lessen throughout the day. It has been shown that 200 mg of caffeine can help you identify words and phrases faster than you could do without coffee.

Related: (Slideshow) Believe It or Not, Starbucks is Not Just About the Coffee

Many entrepreneurs make it their goal to pick up new skills, learn technology or gain a better understanding of where their company stands among others in their industry. A cup of coffee – or two – just might be what you need to give your full attention to the material you’re studying and put it to use in your company.

Final thoughts

It’s important to be aware of both the upsides and downsides of coffee. Moderate use, with accompanying attention to your sleeping habits and stress levels, can be beneficial. Meanwhile, be aware that overuse and misuse may agitate an existing health problem or develop a new one. Typically, caffeine abuse isn’t worth the trouble it brings, so set boundaries for yourself and stay healthy.

This article was originally posted here on Entrepreneur.com.

Thomas Smale co-founded FE International in 2010, growing the business with zero funds from scratch to a seven-figure-a-year business. Specializing in advising and brokering the sale of established websites and online businesses, FE International has completed over 210 transactions. Smale has been interviewed on podcasts, blogs and also spoken at a number of industry events on online businesses, exit strategy and selling businesses.

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Company Posts

Travel At The Touch Of A Button

The revolutionary Travelit app has been developed for the global marketplace to meet your business travel needs.

Tourvest

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Travelit has launched an easy-to-use mobile app that simplifies the trip approval process, provides a full trip itinerary and assists in management of travel expenses.

“The app is designed in South Africa, for the African and global marketplace,” says Wayne Muirhead Chief Sales Officer at Travelit. “We have developed the app locally with our own developers, and opted not to use a white labelling solution.”

The app interface enables the requirements of travellers, approvers, users, as well as finance and procurement role players to be met so each trip is seamlessly planned and executed.

Stress-free financial administration

“Expense management is an integral part of the complete travel cost; businesses want to understand their complete travel bill,” says Wayne. This is why the app incorporates features that facilitate:

  • Capturing of photographs of receipts real-time
  • Immediate allocation of expenses to the correct description
  • Uploading expenses for workflow approval
  • Attachment of an expense to a travel trip, or generating a non-travel related expense.

Simplified trip approval process

In addition, approvers’ features enable simple visibility into the trip’s cost and details:

  • Approval of booking requests
  • Trip confirmation once trip has been successfully approved
  • Managing alerts — approval notifications, pre-trip notification as well as travel notifications
  • Out of office activation for approvers.

Related: How Travelit Makes Travelling Affordable For Small Businesses

Trip management made easy

With Travelit’s new app, travellers have the ability to update, create new profiles directly from their phones and update and store all their information, including:

  • Updating of profile details
  • Personal information
  • Visas, passports, meal types, seating preferences
  • Loyalty programmes.

As a traveller, when you are travelling, you require information, updates and access to your travel documentation in real time. The Trip Manager function provides you with this through the following functions:

  • View current, pending and past trips
  • Trip itinerary information
  • View trips that are awaiting approval
  • View supplier vouchers
  • Locate properties via the Map option
  • Boarding passes are available
  • Real-time alerts to travellers.

Related: Save Up To 25% On Your Travel Costs

Happy travels

“We have done a soft launch with the app and offered it to strategic users and clients within our ecosystem,” says Wayne. These corporates have enjoyed the functions within the app, such as:

  • Real time information for the traveller (itineraries, vouchers, boarding passes)
  • Approval notifications and the approval capability
  • Notifications
  • Contact information for the consultants after-hours, and assistance
  • Access to the traveller profile to ensure their data is updated and correct
  • Check-in to the airline.

The Travelit app is available in the Google Play Store and iOS Store. Travelit will make monthly app releases by offering users ongoing functionality and features.

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Company Posts

Access To The Best In Travel Excellence

As a global company, business travel plays an important part in Hatch’s successful operation. Yolandi Coertze, facilities manager at Hatch, explains how switching to Travelit changed the way they travelled forever — for the better.

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Multinational engineering consultancy, Hatch requires a travel partner that provides easy access to its regional and international offices for meetings, conferences and client engagements. This is why Hatch chose Travelit, and has since experienced reliable and consistently superior service, says Yolandi Coertze, facilities manager.

“Travelit allows us to have the flexibility in terms of work sharing with global offices and makes it possible for us to attend to our client requirements in a professional and efficient manner.”

Here’s how partnering with Travelit has helped Hatch soar as a market leader.

What have Hatch’s biggest business travel challenges 
been to date?

Our biggest challenge has been to provide our travellers with an easy booking solution that gives them the best options available at a glance, in line with our travel policy for their travel arrangements, without taking up valuable time when booking their travel. In addition, managing cost against convenience and ease of travel is an ongoing challenge.

Why did you start using Travelit?

We were in the market for an online booking solution. Travelit made an impressive proposal by building the system around our specific needs and requirements. They incorporated our travel policy guidelines, while offering us an easy-to-use booking system which decreased our monthly expenditure. The platform also allows us to manage our travel more effectively.

Related: How Travelit Makes Travelling Affordable For Small Businesses

How has Travelit made doing business easier?

We have seen a big change in travel behaviour and travellers are more aware of unnecessary costs that can be avoided when booking travel. Travel booking time (once travel bookers became used to the system) has also decreased, which allows travel bookers to utilise the extra time 
more efficiently.

What benefits have you experienced as a Travelit client?

We have seen a big decrease in our missed savings, which means that our travellers are booking in line with our travel policy by utilising the parameters that have been set up in Travelit. Our contracts with certain suppliers are also maintained on the Travelit platform, which allows us to utilise the lowest rate to keep in line with our travel policy. The ease of booking online at any time when travel is required is an additional benefit. We have reduced our paperwork by being online, and uploading data into our accounting system has made the process simple and efficient.

Why would you recommend Travelit to other businesses?

Travelit is efficient in terms of booking travel, cost-effective and allows for flexibility where required.

What makes Travelit the best in the market?

  • Multi-leg international routings
  • Travel behaviour reports
  • Alternative solution to bill-backs
  • Tracked booking patterns
  • Accommodation feedback solution
  • Comprehensive fare calculator.

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Company Posts

Beyond Business Class

RwandAir, the national carrier of the Republic of Rwanda, is reputed for its excellent on-time performance, customer service and safety – and it has one of the youngest fleets on the African continent.

RwandAir

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Vital Stats

RwandAir has just celebrated yet another big milestone as the airline continues to expand its network. “Our aim is to provide to our customers seamless and better connections on the continent and beyond. Abuja and Cape Town come in as a boost to the different economies in terms of tourism and trade on one hand and enhance bilateral partnership between our countries on the other,” beams Chance Ndagano, previous CEO of RwandAir.

RwandAir, an IATA member, recently renewed its IOSA certification and has been ISAGO and EASA certified. With a fleet of twelve aircraft, including two wide-body Airbus A330 acquired last year, the airline currently reaches out to 26 destinations across East, Central, West and Southern Africa, the Middle East, Europe and Asia.

Related: ‘Shark Tank’ Investors Reveal Top 5 Tips To Make Your Business Famous

Rapid African advancement

Launched in December 2002 as RwandAir Express, RwandAir is among the continent’s the fastest-growing airlines, despite its recent entry into the market. Since its first flight took off, RwandAir has boasted unsurpassed, safe and reliable service, operating from the city of Kigali.

The Rwandan airline aims to connect Rwanda with the world and vice versa. This goal is being achieved through its network that currently covers a number of cities throughout Africa, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. RwandAir’s most popular flight routes include flights from Johannesburg to Dubai, London and Mumbai.

A year of successes

Recently, RwandAir started flights from Kigali to Mumbai, London (Gatwick) and Brussels as well as Dakar from its new hub in Cotonou. The airline also introduced flights to Abidjan, Libreville and Brazzaville from its Cotonou hub. In May 2017 the airline started flying direct from Cape Town to Harare.

This year the airline will be introducing new routes to Addis, Tel Aviv, China and New York.

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