Coffee-Pot Effect

Organizations that are small and located on a single or small number of sites are said to benefit from what is variously called “the coffee-pot effect,” “tea-room conferences,” “the water cooler channel,” “toilet talks,” and “elevator encounters,” that is to say informal channels for communication where individuals from different groups or senior and junior employees meet and communicate ideas and issues while using common facilities; this may lead to substantial improvements in corporate performance through better problem identification and solving, internal communication and take-up of ideas. When companies are divided on multiple sites this effect may be lost.