According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, before the COVID-19 pandemic, the average American spent over 40 hours in the office each week. As we return to the workplace, and because of the often long hours that people clock at work, more employers are paying attention to workplace design and how that affects their productivity and reputation.
Integrated technology, furniture and supplies, color combinations, lighting, and even workplace acoustics are essential elements that can affect employee productivity, collaboration, and comfort. With a strategically creative and cohesive workplace environment, employers can positively influence company growth as well as employee satisfaction and health.
But what changes can you implement to help your employees enjoy their work? Below, we highlight five smart aesthetic choices to help you improve productivity, creativity, and innovation at work.
#1. Add Some Greenery
According to a study from Fast Company, adding leafy green plants around a workspace can help with the following:
- Increasing productivity
- Boosting concentration and mental cognition
- Reducing stress
- Improving air quality
- Reducing the number of sick days employees take
Brighten up the office with some indoor plants. You can install a living wall with creepers, get some planters or succulents, or even add some natural graphics to bring Mother Nature into your workplace. If you’re worried about the costs of plant care and maintenance, consider using digital prints and wall coverings to simulate the great outdoors.
#2. Install a Glass Divider
Modern design trends lean heavily towards open layouts since they help spark conversation, encourage a stronger sense of community, and allow for smooth movements and transitions. While an open work environment does offer excellent benefits, it also comes with major pitfalls.
A study from Cornell University found that open office layouts tend to increase background noise and make people feel that they have no space of their own. These two drawbacks can have adverse effects on employees such as decreased productivity, lower morale, and increased stress levels.
Instead of having an entirely open workspace, consider installing glass dividers to section off spaces where employees can concentrate and work without distractions. Glass dividers look sophisticated and modern, allowing for both privacy and transparency in the workplace. If you want to kick things up a notch, apply frosted film or glass art to add charm to plain glass.
#3. Increase Access to Natural Light
Natural light does not just help improve the focus, mood, and morale of workers, it also helps foster creativity and innovation. A report from Harvard Business Review showed that access to outdoor views and natural light were the top attributes that employees want most for their workplace.
Install new or larger windows to bring in more natural light. This has the added benefit of also helping cut down on energy costs by maximizing natural light in the space. If windows aren’t an option for the space, add desk lamps to reduce the use of fluorescent lighting. Use soft-colored bulbs to create a warm and inviting space for both employees and guests.
#4. Pick the Right Splash of Color
Does your office still have those plain, boring white walls? This is the best time to paint them a different shade. Although white does have its place in interior design, it’s best to avoid this bland and sterile color if you want to boost creativity and productivity at work.
Here are some great options:
- Green is a cool color that doesn’t cause eye fatigue. It’s the ideal choice if your employees are working long hours.
- Blue helps foster a stable and relaxed environment so workers can focus and buckle down.
- If most of your employees are working on tasks involving physical labor, red is an excellent choice. This vibrant color raises the heart rate, and promotes blood flow.
- Yellow is a top option if you wish to encourage creativity and optimism among your workers.
#5. Choose the Right Furniture
The best offices aren’t just functional, they embody the company’s values, personality, and culture. There’s no better way to make this happen by adding furniture and equipment that don’t just reflect your brand, but also remind your employees and visitors of your company’s vision and history.
Your office design should always take into account your company’s goals and your employees’ physical and technological requirements.
For example, it might be beneficial to have modern amenities such as a fully-functional kitchen, a hospitality hub, or a cozy lounge where your workers can socialize, network, and collaborate.
You might also want to switch out hard plastic and wooden chairs for ergonomic seats. Although it can be pricey, well-designed ergonomic furniture is definitely worth investing in for the productivity and health benefits it offers your employees.
Designing or Remodeling Your Office? Contact Us Today
If you need help in making sure that your office space properly reflects your brand identity, contact an experienced furniture dealer now.
At T2B Interiors, we focus on delivering positive workspaces that mirror the vision and culture of our clients. We combine strategic planning, creative design, and comprehensive product knowledge to help businesses flourish and elevate their brand.
Whether you need new flooring, furniture or even an entire new lobby for your hard-working employees and valued clients, contact us today to learn how our designers can meet your needs.