When it comes to creating a positive working environment, and boosting employee productivity, the way your office is set up can play a huge role. But how should you design your office so that everyone’s happy?
Building a strong company culture is the ultimate goal for many businesses, and for good reason. Employee happiness has a key role in this endeavor, since a happy employee who enjoys coming to work is much more productive and loyal.
This is why successful companies are constantly working on creating and encouraging a working environment where employees will enjoy coming, because a satisfied employee who feels that you care about their wellbeing will value their position in the company and be motivated to do their best in performing their tasks. If you are looking for a way to boost the happiness of your employees and work towards establishing a happiness culture within your company, creating an inspiring and modern office setup is a good place to start.
Why you want happy employees
The main reason why you want your employees to be satisfied with their workspace is that employees who enjoy their jobs and like their environment are more successful, which increases their self-confidence and encourages them to accomplish even more, by instilling a positive attitude towards overcoming challenges and a winning mentality.
Such employees are also likely to encourage others with their example and contribute to a generally positive atmosphere at the office. Having happy people working at the office also means having people who are ready to support their colleagues, by providing them with both help and encouragement when needed, which contributes to the personal relationships between co-workers and encourages team building, resulting in a strong group of motivated people working towards a common goal.
On the other hand, an unencouraged employee is far less likely to go the extra mile and find pleasure in exceeding expectations set before them and actively contribute to the success of their peers and the company.
How to model the office space
So how can you create a workspace which will increase your employee’s productivity and reduce their stress levels? Should you go for an open floor plan, cubicles, or offices? The answer is that you should try to give your employees several options when it comes to their surroundings at work.
If you can, you should provide your employees with different areas where they can be alone to focus, collaborate with their co-workers, and space where they can socialize. So, instead of designing the entire office space with a single model in mind, try to add some diversity to your working environment and offer employees some flexibility in terms of where they can perform everyday tasks. After all, not all people are equally productive when in certain surroundings, nor is a certain type of office appropriate for all tasks and activities.
If you are looking to design or redesign your working space to maximize your employee happiness and productivity, consider hiring a commercial fit out design specialist as they will know and understand the best way to make the most of the space you have.
How to promote employee wellbeing
Apart from the mentioned practical aspects of office design, there are also some other suggestions on how to provide a stimulating environment for your employees. Spending the entire day at work in a sitting posture can be detrimental to the employee in more than one way. Hence, the working space should be design in a way that encourages some movement, and provide the opportunity to alternating between sitting, walking, and standing, with the employee spending less time in a chair.
Any form of physical activity, such as walking while talking to a colleague, climbing the stairs several times during the day, or simple stretching, will contribute to the employee feeling better and improve their focus and concentration.
Incorporating some elements of nature in the office will also positively affect your employee’s health and stress levels. This can be as easy as having large windows filling the office with natural light or offering a nice view, along with some fresh air. Green potted plants can also be used to decorate the office space, in conjunction or as an alternative to openable windows and outside greenery. The same approach can be used when decorating the walls and choosing a blend of colors and materials for the office.
Change is good
It is important, however, to keep in mind that the needs or preferences of your employees may change over time, and it’s key to always have room to further personalize the office space to the working habits and routines of the employees. This is why you should consider how they work, where they do most of their work and which parts of the office are used the least. You can gather this information either through observation, or by asking them what changes they would like to see.
By making periodical changes and upgrading the office to provide an environment which will accommodate the requirements of your employees, your company is bound to benefit from all the perks of having motivated and loyal employees and a strong culture within the company. Sometimes even small changes in the layout or design can help the premises remain appealing and improve the working experience for everyone.
Considering that your employees will spend a large portion of each day at the office, it is easy for their day-to-day experience to become dull and repetitive. However, it is up to you as the employer to show them they are valued and that you care about their wellbeing by providing them with a working environment which will allow them to be flexible and enjoy their time at work whilst motivate them to develop their careers and grow with your company.
Genuine concern about the conditions they work in will go a long way in terms of establishing loyalty and a culture of happy workers, which will undoubtedly result in higher productivity and better performance, as well as their wish to remain part of the team, instead of looking for job opportunities elsewhere. That being said, investing in your office setup is investing in your company’s culture and employee happiness.
Author: Emily is a business psychologist with a passion for marketing. Researching, exploring and writing are her favorite things to do. Besides that, she loves animals, music and traveling.