Making a Blanket Statement on Workplace Equity

A blonde haired woman facing away wrapped in a thermal imaging blanket.

Here’s a chilling fact: 76% of women find their office environment uncomfortably cold, a discomfort rooted in an outdated formula from the 1960s, designed for the comfort of 40-year-old, wool-suit-wearing 150-pound men. This temperature standard may have seemed cool for male-dominated offices 60 years ago, but today, it is effectively giving the cold shoulder to more than half of today’s physiologically diverse workforce. Studies have shown that these cooler working temperatures can negatively impact women’s productivity and cognitive performance, seriously hindering their career progression over time. Now that’s cold.  

“’Turn the Temp to 23’ isn’t merely about adjusting the thermostat; it’s a broader call to make our workplaces more inclusive,” states Lindsey Ash, Chief Talent Officer at Publicis Canada. “By aiming for a more inclusive 23 degrees Celsius, we’re not just addressing women’s comfort but enhancing the work environment for everyone, without compromising men’s comfort or performance.” 

In a creative twist, the campaign features blankets that read “hot tip, I’m cold” and “I need a raise in temperature too,” transforming a common workaround into a powerful symbol of change. These wearable calls-to-action spotlight how a simple act—adjusting the thermostat—can challenge and illuminate the structural inequalities affecting women in a male-designed world.  

To empower advocacy for this warmer standard, Publicis Canada has unveiled an online platform enabling employees everywhere to anonymously express their discomfort and advocate for change in their office directly with decision-makers. 

The campaign received enthusiastic support from industry leaders, major echoes in industry publications like Campaign and Ad Age, and a commitment from corporations to adopt the recommended temperature setting, indicating a shift towards acknowledging and addressing workplace inequalities. 

“This initiative is a catalyst for change, urging us to reevaluate and amend outdated norms to create workplaces – and a world – that respects our diverse society,” reflects Ash. “’Turn the Temp to 23’ is not just about addressing gender inequality; it’s about fostering a broader dialogue on systematic inequality as whole.” 

For more information or to join the movement, visit