Designing Offices with Productivity in Mind

Posted by on January 11, 2012 in Small Business Efficiency [ 2 Comments ]

A boring, uninspiring workspace can have employees dreading going into the office. When they drag themselves into their cubicles, oftentimes their motivation to work drastically decreases. As a result, productivity plummets and the company suffers all because of a mismatched color scheme or lifeless environment.

However, companies can easily avoid this problem with a few office design makeover tips.  The office is the space in which they spend the majority of their time. Therefore, it is important that the workspace goes beyond providing basic needs and is designed to provide long lasting benefits to both the employee and the company. There are a variety of ways in which managers can change their workspace, all with productivity and efficiency in mind. By creating a desirable office, employees can work in peace and comfort.

5 Tips for a More Productive Office

Re-designing an office doesn’t have to involve a large budget or extensive time commitment. The following tips can help managers design a more efficient environment:

1. Integrate your Brand

Most companies have a brand or logo, which displays the image of the business.  Integrating elements of a brand can help give the office a theme, while setting employees under a collective theme.  For example, a color theme and style similar to that of the brand can set the tone of an office, as well as give visitors a favorable impression.

In addition, companies should also consider the industry in which they sell their products and services. For example, a creative agency should include furniture with elements of design and art, while a video game company will most likely integrate gaming culture into their space.

2. Involve Nature

There are a number of ways in which companies can include Mother Nature in the workspace. Placing workstations or desks near windows can vitalize employees and provide them with natural light. Plants are also a welcome addition to the workspace, providing employees with fresh oxygen and much needed greenery. Certain companies also allow employees to bring their pets into their offices, creating a friendlier workspace. A nature-friendly office can also be combined with sustainability efforts throughout the office. To learn more about creating a green environment, check out the resources provided by the Sierra Club.

3. Remove Distractions

One of the major barriers to productivity is distractions, which hinders and prevents employees from completing their work. In order to create an efficient workspace, managers should pinpoint sources of distraction and consider these when designing an office. For example, a major source of office distraction comes from external sounds, from a variety of sources. Office equipment and appliances can be noisy and distracting, and should be placed well away from work-spaces.

4. Maintain Privacy

Working with the fear of prying eyes can be exhausting for employees because they always have to watch over their shoulders. This stress can have a harmful effect on productivity and should be taken into consideration.  While creating a layout for desks or cubicles, managers should consider the type of layout that will offer privacy for individuals. Some individuals may prefer a closed environment, while others will work best in an open workstation environment.

5. Allow Decorations

Another way to promote productivity in the office is to allow employees to add their own personal touch. Decorations on a desk or cubicle can give employees a sense of personalization and comfort, as well as provide an opportunity to devise ways to maintain productivity. In addition, the entire office can reap the benefits from creating a relaxed, friendly environment.

Many companies strive to achieve a level of productivity that will allow them to grow by leaps and bounds. With the following tips, managers can create a well-designed office that provides employees with a productive, yet friendly environment.

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2 thoughts on “Designing Offices with Productivity in Mind

  1. avatarDebbieBrowning

    What a great list of tips and if I wasn’t so afraid of my boss, I would actually send this link to her considering thre are a lot of things that should be present in my office, but aren’t. I don’t work for a large company, but a small one and we are a floor of faceless cubicles honestly since we aren’t allowed anything personal beyond family photos or else we get written up. Of course, organization is also an issue in such a tight space and over the holidays we just seem to get worse and worse and of course, my boss has no sympathy. As a joke, a friend of mine sent out a general email with the link to an online, messy office contest called “Pimp My Cube” and we all had a good laugh except my boss wasn’t amused. I wish she realized that a little personal space and personality go far in any office.

  2. avatarRachel Hyun Kim

    Sorry to hear about your boss; its tough when your manager doesn’t understand the importance of personalization. Perhaps you and others can explain to her the benefits of personal space? Let us know how it goes!

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