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Sometimes Not Thinking About Business Is Good For Business


We are all spending too much time sitting down. Reports, research and medical experts have been putting forward this message more and more strongly for years. A lifestyle that is too sedentary has been linked to obesity, diabetes and heart disease to name a few health aspects.

Research from Fellowes in 2018 found that 81% of office workers it surveyed spend between four and nine hours a day sitting at their desks, equating to 67 sedentary days a year. A significant 64% of respondents said they believe their workplace is having a negative impact on their health. This can translate into low productivity, a high level of sick days and high staff turnover.

As a result, many more forward-thinking organisations are looking to give employees convenient, affordable access to a range of fitness-related activities. Business campus Dublin Airport Central has taken the view that having access to a range of activities isn’t just good for workers’ health, but for everyone’s enjoyment of their workplace.

“Sometimes to do good business, companies need to let their staff forget about business and have some fun, get active,” Dublin Airport Central’s Head of Sales and Marketing Paul Byrne said. “We want our customers to ensure their staff benefit around these areas of activity, sport and wellness. All our customers, from small startups to major multinational, can plug and play into all facilities.”

The Growth In Sport

Although we reportedly spend more time sitting at work than previous generations, outside of work many people are taking up more active lifestyles. Certain sports have been growing in popularity in recent years. For example, adult membership of Athletic Ireland has been growing steadily as more and more ‘recreational’ runners join running clubs and 'couch to 5K' programmes. According to the Irish Sports Monitor Survey, cycling is now only behind running and swimming in popularity.

Dublin Airport Central is tapping into people’s growing desire to be fit and healthy by offering facilities such as swimming pools, gyms, five-a-side football pitches and a driving range on campus. The organisation is promoting the government’s Bike to Work scheme, supporting tenants who take part to obtain a new bike and safety equipment. Several tenants make use of the football pitches, organising five-a-side games each week as part of team building.

However, the campus management team is going beyond just offering facilities by organising events and activities. In July, the business campus held its third annual 5K fun run. About 200 people attended the inaugural run, but this year more than 500 people took part. 

“Kellogg's had not even come on-site yet, but they participated in the July fun run,” Byrne said. “That shows you how interested our customers are. They take it seriously too, a bit of healthy competition; ESB International had the winning employee with a time of just over 16 minutes which is almost a professional speed. One attendee had stepped straight off the plane, arriving in running gear with his suitcase in tow.”


A Way To Attract Tenants

The range of activities on offer at Dublin Airport Central has helped the business campus to attract a range of national and international occupiers, as well as smaller businesses and startups. Many factor the facilities into their overall wellness offering to staff.

“Kellogg’s were very interested to learn about the on-site facilities around the gyms, the food and beverage offering and so on as they were keen to show their staff that they care about them,” Byrne said. “This is common with incoming tenants, who are keen to understand what staff can do at lunchtime, before, after and even during work hours to support their wellness strategy.”

Further activities and facilities will be added at Dublin Airport Central as the area develops. For example, a new 1.25-acre park will be an outdoor event space holding events such as yoga, food markets and exhibitions. The managing team at Dublin Airport Central has a strong focus on delivering wellness aspects; in addition to the traditional gym offerings on campus that offer spinning, swimming, fitness classes and so on, the team is looking to add a new science-led gym that will have an emphasis on one-to-one workouts and tailored meal plans.

Dublin Airport Central has set itself a challenge to deliver a new airport city quarter for Dublin. However, it’s evident that in order to get there the team has developed a strategic focus on supporting businesses to take their employee welfare seriously, which is increasingly important as the health impacts of sitting still too long are more understood. The long-term impacts on productivity, absenteeism and overall enjoyment are not to be underestimated.

This feature was produced by Bisnow Branded Content in collaboration with Dublin Airport Central. Bisnow news staff was not involved in the production of this content.