5 Things You Should Do To Improve Your Office Space Today

March 23, 2015

9:00 am

Lack of space, queues in from of the coffee machine and constantly bumping elbows with your co-workers not only creates frustration, but can drastically decrease overall productivity. While a messy desk can promote creative thinking at the beginning of the project, says a recent study by Psychological Science, a clean one can foster better decision making and result into faster project completion at final stages. Here are 5 more things you can improve in your office today to skyrocket your team’s productivity tomorrow.

1.  Set up a creative corner in your office

Fill it up with beach balls, balloons, space hoppers and other fun objects filled with air to boost your team productivity. Let the people walk there bare foot. Why? Well, back in the old days when the most significant inventions were made like the wheel, people walked this way, right? Don’t believe me? Give it a try and see how entrepreneurial you start feeling. Set the 30/30 work cycle for your team – after 30 minutes of intense problem-solving, they can relax for 30 minutes before attempting a new challenge.

It’s an unusual approach to the workplace, but the high-tech start-ups of the 21st century must take unusual approaches to set themselves apart from the crowd.

2. Sort out your cords

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One of my biggest pet peeves about most tech offices are the billions of cords running everywhere. Not only do they make the space look cluttered, but exposed cords break more often. Frankly, how many times a day do you wheel over them with your chair? Smart and simple solution: install access flooring.

“Low profile access flooring is a great way to get wires and cables out of the way of creative productivity. Small, growing tech startups benefit from the low cost and rapid deployment features of a cable management floor. The ability to reconfigure the access floor system as their business expands means it’s always right-sized and ready for explosive growth.” – says Ryan Hulland, Business Development Manager at Netfloor USA.

3.  Include sufficient lightning

One of the most overlooked office elements, the lighting can make or break your office atmosphere and teams productivity. You should always incorporate at least two sources of light into the room – an overhead light as well as a task light. Also, consider to highlight extra sitting by a floor lamp. To reduce glare, opt for modern LED bulbs that consume less energy and last longer.

To reduce blue light from the screens, install f.lux  – handy software that will make the color of your computer’s display adapt to the time of day – warm at night and like sunlight during the day. Guys who love staying out late will love it and it will cut down insurance costs on vision.

4. Establish a focal point

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Having a focal point will help your team members to keep attention of tasks for a longer period of time. For instance, offset their computer with some hanged grouped artwork, posters, printables etc. In the background or consider installing a specialized wall treatment such as photo wallpaper or a mural.

Let the decision be collective and ask your team how exactly they want to decor their personal spaces and the room in general. You’ll boost their creativity and enhance your communication.

5. Choose the wall color wisely

The room can look attractive without the walls screaming of obnoxious colors, so the best decision is to opt for a neutral pallet with a touch of contrasting color here and there. Also, neutral colors may be relaxing, but after a while can tire you; however, light shades may need extra cleaning once in a while.

Remember, not all colors were created equal. For instance, yellow is known to stimulate creativity, clarity of thought and mental activity; while red is kind of an aggressive color that could stimulate those making sales or closing deals. Shades of oranges encourage socialization, making it a great choice for the meeting room. Light pink is known to have a soothing passive effect and can be perfect setting for relax areas in your office.

Google is well known for studying the effects of new office design, especially office colors, on productivity.

Image credit: Flickr/Dave Fayram

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Dianna is a former ESL teacher and World Teach volunteer, currently living in France. She's slightly addicted to apps and viral media trends and helps different companies with product localization and content strategies. You can tweet her at @dilabrien

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