Juice Cleanses Would Make Horrible Corporate Team-Building Exercises

I’m writing this piece to inform you of a really horrible trend in corporate team-building. But also as a plea to my editor-in-chief Meredith Lepore, to never, ever make me participate in a juice cleanse for work. Seriously, Meredith. I won’t be able to handle it.

According to the New York Times, office “Biggest Loser” competitions are so out. Business juice cleanses are the newest thing for co-workers looking to motivate one another into healthier living. Of course, the main problem is that juice cleanses really haven’t been proven to be healthy.

I mean, that’s the obvious issue. Juice cleanses don’t have an actual benefit for your health. Problem number one, right there. But here are a couple other things to consider when you’re talking about a big corporate juice cleanse.

  • People are cranky without food. Lack of food does weird things to people. I had a college roommate who got seriously snappy the hour before dinner. She just did not function well when she was hungry. You don’t want a bunch of angry co-workers glaring over their guava juice.
  • Massive, coordinated caffeine headaches. The office would be cleared out by 3pm. Everyone would have to leave when the migraine kicked in from missing their morning coffee. That’s two whole hours of prime business time when your building would look deserted.
  • Lack of concentration. The work that is done that week will most likely be half-hearted. It’s hard to focus when all you can think about is taking a bite of something that crunches. Or the odd grumbling that keeps coming out of your abdomen.
  • Team-building exercises can be fun. My company had an office happy hour. Let me tell you, it brought us all a lot closer than company wide V-8 diet. We also attended sporting events, held our own competitions and had holiday celebrations. I worked for a company that did an amazing job of encouraging teamwork. And I enjoyed all of it. So I know it’s possible.
  • Not everyone is competitive. Not everyone wants to be the guy who held out the longest on the horrible roller-coaster that is a juice cleanse. Some people might, but not everyone. And the whole point of a team-building exercise is for the whole team to do it. Personally, this would be one competition that I would be happy to lose.
Really corporate America? Juice cleanses? What we will come to next? These are not team-building exercises, these are enforced cultural trends on an unsuspecting group of people. I won’t stand for it! No more mandatory or coerced juice cleanses. (Seriously Meredith, I’ll strike if you try this.)
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