If someone asked you to describe your home, think about how you would reply. You would probably mention aspects of your home that involve comfort, aesthetic beauty, and an ambiance you strategically crafted so you and your loved ones would feel happy and content. Unfortunately, if most employees were asked to describe their offices, the answers would probably have little to do with a sense of well-being. There’s a move to change that, which is a win-win for employees and employers. Because, let’s face it, designing an office can be overwhelming enough.
Does Design Really Matter?
Creating a thoughtful office space that encourages feelings of well-being absolutely requires more time and expense than simply filling an office space with the necessities and leaving it at that. If you’re not moved by the desire to keep your employees happy, you may be moved by studies that conclude that offices that ignore employees’ mental and physical wellbeing suffer in the productivity department.
Multiple studies have concluded that offices that are too hot or too cold reduce productivity. A 2011 study concluded that employees whose offices were filled with sunlight and beautiful views took 6.5 fewer sick days than employees with no views and no natural light. Workers whose offices have windows sleep more than 45 minutes per night more than those who do not, say scientists with the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. You don’t have to be a scientist to agree that well-rested employees are productive employees!
Artsy Workplaces Are Productive Workplaces
Here at Houston Installation Services, we’ve always argued the importance of color in the workplace; however, some business owners may argue that extras like colorful wall canvases, murals, sculptures and other artistic touches are simply wastes of money. Studies seem to side with us. Business Committee for the Arts (a nonprofit founded in the 1960s by David Rockefeller to encourage art in the workplace) conducted a study years ago with the International Association of Professional Art Advisors. The results? More than 80% of employees surveyed said art in the workplace was important to their mental wellbeing at work.
The Movement Toward Productive Well-Being in Office Design is Gaining Momentum
Beyond designing workplaces with maximum access to windows and natural light that embrace color and art, there are other tangible things employers can do to improve employee health and wellbeing — which is synonymous with productivity. Think back to your own home and what makes you feel a sense of wellbeing.
To make employees as comfortable as possible, employers can replace traditional office desks and chairs with sit-stand desks. Sitting for eight hours per day isn’t healthy, and it’s not conducive to productivity. Sit-stand desks allow employees to work in a way that’s most comfortable for them.
Employees are humans and humans are social beings. Humans also desire peace and quiet at some points during the day. That’s why the most productive offices have zones that encourage social collaboration – and zones that allow privacy.
Nature is a calming influence that inspires a sense of wellbeing. (You probably have flowers, plants, an aquarium or some sort of natural element in your home.) Smart employers bring the outdoors into the office. The simplest and lowest-maintenance way to do that is to fill the office with potted plants. They’re beautiful, natural and they purify indoor air.
Regardless of what business you’re in, you are probably in it for one reason: to make a profit. Thinking that creature comforts like art, plants, access to windows, etc. is wasteful is short-sighted. Bring in elements to promote employee well-being and watch productivity soar – saving you time and money!
Houston Installation Services has been in business for over 35 years, so we know a thing or two about office furniture installation; office moving, reconfiguration, and relocation; and office space planning for big projects. We love to share our knowledge that can help you save time and money too! Contact us for more information.