Productivity: it’s the ability to generate, create or enhance a product or service.
This is a fairly straightforward concept. All companies generate some sort of product or service; otherwise they wouldn’t exist. Meaning the question lies not in how to be productive, rather in how to be more productive.
So is there an equally straightforward process for boosting productivity? Not really.
Each business is unique, with specific goals and expectations. There is no magic solution. If there were, you wouldn’t be reading this right now.
But on a positive note, with mindful planning focused on your business’ needs, pinpointing what your ideal office space looks like is possible. Before you undergo any major changes to the function and design of your space, understand what you’re working with and where you want to go.
Check out the following tips, consider how they relate to your business plan, and then confidently take the necessary steps toward creating the ideal office space for your company.
Open Concept, cubicles, or a combination?
There are a ton of factors at play when it comes to office layout. Are you a creative marketing business? A collaborative legal firm? A fast-paced sales office? The right layout depends entirely on the goals of your business and how you go about reaching them.
The latest trends promote a flexible work environment. Meaning employers provide staff with the choice in where and how they work, depending on the task at hand.
In a single day, an employee may need to make a private phone call, bounce ideas off a co-worker, lead a client meeting and hunker down to focus on a project.
Try to picture this same employee successfully managing each of those tasks in just one workspace. It doesn’t make sense, does it?
Break down the tasks your employees are responsible for on any given day. If 90 percent of their roles involve confidential conversations, then cubicles or private offices make most sense. On the other hand, if your office spends large portions of the day in group meetings or conducting teamwork, an open-concept layout is the way to go.
Trendy or traditional?
Envision your dream office. Are you attracted to classic design elements, or do you prefer a more modern, edgy look?
Chances are, few people in your office will picture the same thing. Furthermore, when the issue at hand is increasing productivity, the key is focusing on functionality and motivation more than personal taste.
Take color, for example. What may seem like a simple decision based on what’s in style actually has a substantial psychological impact on people. Selecting the right color is critical to spurring the desired mood and level of motivation in both your employees and clients.
Consider this breakdown before opting for a splash of color:
Red triggers a physical response. It increases heart rate and blood flow and as such, can be used to motivate people in physical jobs or to elicit feelings of courage and strength.
Yellow is the creative hue. Collaborative environments often incorporate yellow to promote creativity, confidence and positivity.
Green is the go-to color. It’s one of the easiest colors on the eyes, so it makes sense for offices with people working long hours. It helps keeps people calm while also encouraging efficiency.
Blue offers stability. It is often associated with communication and intellect, which explains why it’s one of the most common shades found in offices.
Grey triggers feelings of depression and reduces energy, so stay away from this drab option.
And while paint color may be easy to change if you make the wrong choice, what about the type of furniture you use? Maybe you’ve seen pictures online of the office with people working away at a laptop while sitting on a beanbag chair. The idea may seem fun, but imagine the neck pain after an hour, let alone day after day.
Innovative, quirky design has its place. Just make sure you don’t sacrifice practicality and productivity in the name of originality.
Thanks to recently published studies, more value is being placed on incorporating natural elements, quality lighting, and adjustable temperatures in the office. Here’s why:
Nature. Previously thought to create distractions, bringing the outdoors in has actually proven to benefit office productivity. There’s even a name for why: biophilia. The concept of biophilia suggests that humans have an instinctive bond to nature. And if this is the case, it makes sense for people to feel more at ease when surrounded by it.
Lighting. For some reason, lighting is an undervalued aspect of office design. This is changing, though, thanks to recent studies touting its importance. One such study, the Impact of Workplace Daylight Exposure on Sleep, Physical Activity, and Quality of Life, concluded, “the architectural design of office environments should take into consideration how natural daylight exposure may contribute to employee wellness.” Natural light affects the release of melatonin and therefore impacts our circadian rhythm, the body’s sleep regulator. And it’s no secret that a good rest plays a big part in how people function the next day.
Temperature. If you’re one of those people with a touchy internal thermostat, you won’t need convincing. Feeling too cold or overly warm creates major distractions, making it almost impossible to work productively. Scientists found that employers who give staff a small amount of control over office temperature will reap the rewards. Employees with the ability to adjust the thermostat or use personal fans and heaters report being more content at work.
At the end of the day, designing a space that optimizes productivity for your business requires planning. Eliminate emotion and personal taste. Base your decisions on what makes most sense for your employees and the job you expect them complete.
If you’re looking for input and design expertise, contact one of the skilled consultants at TruSpace today.