As bloggers, many of us work from the comfort of our own homes. If you don’t have a private room or office to run your day to day operations, it can be quite tough to actually pull yourself away from your regular activities. When you have a home office, employment location or even work from your coach, this article is going to provide you with all of the insight you need to improve your productivity through office and workspace design.
Studies have shown we spend 50% or more of our lives indoors. When compounded with the 40-plus hour work weeks common in the United States, it’s clear to see most of this time is spent inside an office. If you’re looking to get the most out of your employees and seek to improve their wellbeing, you may need to reassess your office’s design. From ergonomics to lighting, privacy issues to paint swatches, incorporating some of these design tips into your office will streamline employee productivity.
You may not consider employee comfort top priority, but discomfort can greatly affect your office’s output. If your employees chairs are uncomfortable, computer screens cause eye strain, or temperature of the office is unbearable, their productivity is bound to suffer—and so too will your bottom line. Purchase adjustable, ergonomic chairs to prevent your employees from dealing with back aches and pains. Offer risers to ensure computer screens are at optimal viewing heights, and provide footstools to ensure your employees aren’t ruining their posture and causing their body undue strain. Even the smallest of ergonomic changes can mean happier employees.
One of the best ways to find the perfect ergonomic chairs for your office or workspace is to simply perform a Google search or read through the many reviews on Amazon. While many of the chairs, keywords and mice might look the same on the surface, reading up on how they make their customers feel after using them is one of the best ways to get a high-quality product that gets the job done.
Lighting is one of the most important aspects of any space, but it’s also unfortunately an overlooked facet of the office. Do what you can to take advantage of as much natural lighting as possible. If this isn’t applicable for your office space, do the best you can to mimic natural light with artificial, energy-saving sources. Full-spectrum bulbs cast a warm glow that accurately mimic natural light. Position your office furniture to take advantage of these light sources. It’s not just a case of aesthetics; dark spaces can lead to mental health issues, including depression, so it’s in the best interest of your company to assure your lighting is updated and sufficient for your employees.
Blogging is one of the most strenuous jobs you can have in terms of straining your eyes on a daily basis. Making sure the lighting in your office space is optimized for your eyes and productivity is key. Be sure to check out these lighting tips from Remodelista.com.
While many companies have adapted to an open concept office design, depriving employees of any sense of privacy may have a negative effect on workflow and productivity. While collaborative spaces are more desired in today’s day and age, you need to offer employees the option of a private work space. One Harvard study performed back in 2011 found significant evidence of decreased productivity in employees who felt constantly scrutinized in public work spaces. Many felt the level of noise associated with an open concept hindered their ability to complete their work. There’s no straightforward answer for the battle between open concept and private cubicles, as it’s highly dependent on both your work aims and the camaraderie between your individual employees, along with your building layout.
In a recent HuffingtonPost article, the discussion of office space was heavily debated. It’s no longer about simply having employees and making sure they have an active environment to work… now it’s also a question of how much retail space is being taken up and what the company can afford to give in space to each employee. The article went on to say…
“What has happened [to the workplace] is it has gone from a real estate discussion… to becoming more of a people-centric discussion,” said Tracy Wymer, the director of workplace strategy at Knoll, the office design firm. And people, it turns out, need privacy sometimes.
Clutter creates chaos, in more ways than one; it may make your employees less productive and it looks unprofessional in the eyes of visiting clients. While you can’t control every employees’ desk situation, you can supply them with the storage necessities to encourage a cut down on clutter and disorganization. Trimming down the appearance of unnecessary office furniture is also a key way to clear your office of unnecessary disorder.
When it comes to bringing creativity and your own taste to your office, you can always buy office desks that create a clean appearance in your office, get rid of bulky bookcases and storage bins that aren’t used, and encourage employees to scan documents instead of keeping superfluous papers around the building.
The Power of Color
Different colors have different psychological impacts, and a fresh coat of paint in your office could speak subconscious volumes to your employees and visitors. While white is the favored color in terms of cleanliness and professionality, it can give off a sterile, hospital-like vibe while stifling creativity. Blue is known as one of the more productive colors, and purportedly provides a calm vibe. Steer clear of brown, as it’s often purported to promote laziness.
As online marketers and bloggers, we all know about the importance of colors all too well! To refresh our memory on how colors affect buying emotions and how your audience feels when they get to your site or see your online ad campaigns, click here.
This is probably the most inexpensive switch you can make, and it offers big results. Buying a plant for each employee’s desk can keep them healthy and improve productivity. How? Recent studies have shown that plants improve cognitive attention and filter the air of bacteria and mold.
Happy and comfortable employees are productive employees. Putting forth your best effort to create an office conducive to your employees’ needs will streamline workflow and productivity.