On some days, we just don’t feel like leaving home to go to work. Especially on very cold or very hot days, we just want to avoid the commute and the dull office setting. However, we know that it has to be done so we bite the bullet.
You should know, however, that an unpleasant office environment can have detrimental effects on our productivity and satisfaction. That is why you have to do everything in your power to make your office space look cozy and homey. Here are some ways how you can do just that.
Words: Emily Wilson
Talk to your boss about a renovation
Okay, this may sound like too much, but you’ll never know until you ask. Talk to the higher-ups and your colleagues to see how they would feel about an office makeover. Explain to everyone the benefits of a properly designed office.
No one likes going to an office that looks like a prison with no windows and grey walls. Incorporating chill-out zones with comfy couches and having a fully functional kitchen and cafeteria can boost the productivity of the employees.
You can easily find experts that specialize in creating amazing office interiors. Turning to a fit-out company can be the best course of action for you as these professionals tailor their approach depending on your needs.
Repaint the walls
On the other hand, you can suggest some minor redecorations such as painting the walls. Consider colour psychology and your brand colours. See if there is a way for you to combine these two elements. It all depends on the type of work you do. Yellow boosts creativity, while green and blue are great for productivity and keeping calm.
Alternatively, get a few furniture pieces that can bring that pop of colour. For example, a red sofa or orange curtains.
Set the right temperature
A very important factor to take into account is the temperature in the office. If it is too cold, it can affect the productivity of the workers, and too hot of an office can affect their concentration. Yes, we all have different needs but there are some studies that have determined that the ideal temperature for productivity is 22 °C or 71.5 °F.
Check with the rest of the employees to see how they feel about this. If you feel cold, but you cannot get the others to agree with you, there are other options, such as making warm drinks, using a portable heater or keeping a cozy blanket at the office.
Implement better lighting solutions
The lighting in the office plays a crucial role in the productivity of workers as well as their health. There should be plenty of natural light because the sun can boost our mood and enhance our performance. Moreover, a good view can also have an effect on our efficiency.
On the other hand, introducing natural light is sometimes just not possible. In that case, the office should be equipped with adequate artificial lights which can be used for various tasks. Linear fluorescents will make everyone feel and look tired, and that is why you should layer the lights, like at home. Opt for some soft lights to create a sense of comfort. There can be a great chandelier in the centre and sconces all around the office. Desk lamps should also not be ignored. In addition, don’t forget to pay attention to the colour temperature of the lights.
Green up the space
Introducing plants into the office can have great health benefits for everyone. In addition to improving the air quality, greenery can reduce anger, fatigue, anxiety, depression and tension. All of this results in a boost of creativity and better productivity.
However, it is important to select the right kind of plant. Take all factors into consideration. Succulents might be low maintenance but they need a lot of sun. If your office does not get plenty of natural light, go for low-light options, such as peace lilies and snake plants.
Reduce the noise and distractions
Some people need background noise in order to work, while others prefer complete silence. If you are used to your children running around while you do some small tasks, you will probably welcome your colleagues’ chatter. In case you need silence, get some noise-cancelling headphones to keep you focused. Listening to music or white noise can also help some people.
Find the right furniture
If there are any separate areas for private meetings or brainstorming sessions, they should be made very comfy so that creativity can flow. Consider curating the furniture so that it has a homey feel. Include sofas where you can easily recline and put your feet up.
For a break room, go for a similar style. Add rugs for comfort and warmth. You can even introduce floor cushions where people can sit and chat. Socializing can be a great productivity booster as well.
Of course, we should not neglect the importance of having ergonomic furniture. Good posture is vital for your well-being. Get a chair with armrests that allow your elbows to bend at 90 degrees while working. Make sure that the height of the desk is ideal. Moreover, you can also have standing desks or communal tables which can make the space seem like home.
All of these ideas can be implemented on a smaller scale as well. Put a plant on your desk, introduce a pop of colour via cute picture frames, ask for a proper chair, etc. You can also add some motivational quotes that will keep you going. Get a personalized mousepad or keep your pens in your favourite mug.
Moreover, make sure to stay organized. A messy desk can reduce your productivity and distract you. Keep only what you need on the desk and make sure it’s reachable.
As you know, some jobs just cannot be done from home. That is why we should try and make our office feel like home as much as we can. This will keep us motivated to leave the house even on those gloomy days.