For some people, January is a period of new beginnings and
renewed energy. For others, it can be a bit of a depressing time, with a
feeling of post-Christmas and New Year’s deflation – often referred to as the
‘January blues’ – making the thought of going back to work a bit of a struggle.
At Viking, we’re not one for letting this get in the way of being a global office supplies
company, but sometimes we all need a little bit of a boost. That’s why we’re
excited to announce our newest office innovation: The Viking January Blues
Vending Machine – or VJBVM for ‘short’.
That’s right, to make sure nobody must face a case of the
Mondays or a day feeling down in the dumps, we’ve created a one-of-a-kind
vending machine. The aim was to stock it with all the various bits and bobs you
might need to keep yourself feeling tip top and raring to go.
So, to cure the January blues and just in time for Blue Monday
on the 15th January, we surprised our returning employees with the
machine and a set of payment tokens so that nobody needed to use their own
money to get the products. We stocked the machine with products that target the
main causes of January blues: illness, stress, and motivation. We also included
a bonus category for last-minute supplies.
What did we put in it?
Illness and stress are often the biggest culprits when it came to the January blues, so a lot of the product selection targeted these categories. Some products were set to be extremely helpful in curing the odd cold (or did someone say hangover?), whereas others – such as the hazmat suit – were a little more tongue-in-cheek (though they would protect against a cold!).
We also wanted to provide a selection of products for those needing a little bit of a boost – from a pair of slippers for when you need a bit of comfort to a free gym pass for getting active. Motivation is a big part of a happy workforce, and we’re always keen to help out employees feel at their best.
Our final category was designed to solve all those last-minute essentials, such as phone chargers, shirts, ties and tights for meetings and even Epson ink cartridges. You never know when you might need to pop on a tie for a last minute meeting, or grab some juice for your phone before heading out for the evening!
After a few weeks of research, we found a rotary vending machine perfect for stocking differently sized items. With a bit of careful maneuvering (and a beastly 64-page manual to get to grips with) we got our machine up and running.Take a look below at the list of some of the products we put into each category:
Why did we do it?
Studies have shown that winter can have a particularly harsh effect on mental wellbeing, with 30% stating winter affects their productivity and up to half of employees saying that it affects their mood adversely. The same study also notes that the office environment has a particularly vital role in mitigating these feelings, and that’s key to the motivation behind the VJBVM.
Chris Evans Marketing Manager Europe at Viking, explains: “It’s so easy to take our working environment for granted or to forget the incredible impact it can have on productivity, collaboration and even mood. We wanted to try and help quash those January blues this year with a novel approach – something that’s not just functional but a bit of fun.”
“Our employees have loved watching others use the machine as much as using it themselves!”
What do you think of our fantastic January blues-curing vending machine? Let us know what you’d like to see stocked on its shelves over on Twitter @viking_chat.