A person’s surroundings have a huge impact on their ability to work well. In the short term, a bad working environment can make it harder to concentrate and stay motivated. In the long term, your workspace can increase your stress levels and reduce the quality of your work.
As more companies try to make the office space more conducive to good work, they’re increasingly giving up on the traditional layout. You’ve no doubt heard of the crazy office buildings that they have at tech companies with beanbags and sleep pods everywhere. You don’t necessarily need to go that far but you should have a rethink about the office.
Don’t worry too much about making drastic changes. What’s more important is that you aren’t making any big mistakes that affect your employee’s ability to work effectively. Mistakes like these ones.
One Size Fits All Furniture
Assuming that everybody can use the same workstation is a bad move. Every person has their own way of doing things and they have a specific desk setup to go along with it. Forcing employees to work in a space that’s not ideal for them is just going to make them slower. Instead, you should get a range of different office chairs and different sized desks. People can find the one that works best for them. Enforcing specific desks is another issue. You should have a desk reserved for everybody of course, but there’s no problem with people moving around if it suits them better.
Some people prefer to work in absolute privacy and the background of the office can stop them from getting anything done. One of the biggest complaints that staff have with their office is that there aren’t any places where they can get any proper peace and quiet to get some solid work done. Always make sure you’ve got at least one or two quiet rooms where people can go.
Not Enough Light
The amount of light in the office can have a big effect on your staff. Artificial lights, particularly those horrible fluorescent ones, have been proven to make people tired after a while. On the other hand, natural light has been shown to improve energy levels and help with concentration. When you’re organizing the desks in the office, look at where the most natural light is coming in and use it as a guide when you’re placing the desks. Put in some mirrors to bounce the light around a bit as well. By maximising the amount of natural light you’re using, you can give your employees a daily boost.
Noise is by far the biggest distraction around the office. Whether it’s the sound of the photocopier, their coworkers chatting, or the radio, it’s hard to get on when it’s noisy all around you. You can’t exactly insist on dead silence all of the time and most of the problems with noise can be solved with proper insulation. Putting up dividers in the office to stop the sound from traveling will fix it right away.
Avoiding these office design mistakes, so your employees will appreciate that you care about their welfare.