While mindless scrolling through my LinkedIn feed recently and desperately trying to convince myself that I was, in fact, doing something productive (hello! LinkedIn! Work related, right?), it occurred to me that there is an unfeasible amount of discussion about corporate culture. What is it, who has it, who has it not? How to know if you have it and how to get it if you don’t. Steve Jobs created a toxic culture in which everyone feared for their lives at all times, but Gary V and Simon Sinek are like Mother Theresa and Gandhi of the boardroom.
All of this got me thinking. Good company culture can’t be forced, faked or bought. It can, however, be created, developed and encouraged by paying attention to specific details within the office environment. Studies have shown that our office environment has a significant impact on productivity, working relationships and general well-being. When employees feel comfortable and healthy in the workplace, then they’re much more likely to perform at their best.
Here are five simple ideas you can implement to provide a happier, healthier and more productive workplace:
1. Ensure plenty of natural light
Artificial or harsh fluorescent lighting can cause drowsiness, eye strain and headaches. Studies have shown that natural light-filled workplaces are not only better for eyesight, mental state, and overall health, but can increase productivity by up to 40%.
In major cities, offices with natural light typically come at a premium price. With APSO serviced offices in Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide, you can choose from an extensive portfolio of beautifully appointed offices in some of the most sought after locations, each with stunning views and tons of natural light at a greatly reduced cost.
2. Go for ergonomic workspace design
Office workers can be sitting at their desk for up to 6 hours a day or more. With so much sedentary time racking up over days, weeks and months, poorly designed or fitted furniture or equipment can lead to physical problems such as carpal tunnel syndrome, backaches and neck pain. Choosing ergonomic furniture not only prevents injuries but provides a comfortable workstation allowing employees to focus on tasks, not pain.
Of course, having quality ergonomic furniture comes at a cost, but an expense you don’t have to worry about with a serviced office. APSO‘s serviced offices come fitted out with the finest quality furniture included in the price.
3. Embrace a culture of open communication
In addition to the physical elements of an office, a culture that encourages open communication is vital. Show gratitude for hard work. Employee recognition can transform an organisation by increasing enthusiasm, helping to build trust and loyalty. Where there are things that can be improved, delivering that message in a constructive, respectful and positive way can make an employee feel valued and nurtured, rather than criticised.
Feedback is key to increasing productivity and motivation of everyone in the office, including you. Be open to evaluation and invite input from your team on company decisions. A staff force involved in decision-making feels more valued and creates a better work environment. When viewed together all these modes of workplace communication add up to a healthy culture that encourages people to be open, sensitive and empowered.
4. Provide a break out area
Every office, no matter the company size, should offer a break area. A change of environment gives the brain and body a break, gets the blood circulating again, and can help spark creative insights.
If you can, provide fitness or lifestyle facilities on site so that employees’ breaks can be even more beneficial. APSO serviced offices provide a wide range of extra facilities to help staff unwind. Depending on the location you choose, your office may include a pool, sauna, or gym access.
5. Utilise the power of plants
According to a recent University study, office plants boost workers’ creativity by 45%, and productivity by 38%. Placing small plants on desks or shelving, and large indoor plants can boost your mood and create an attractive office environment.
Such aesthetic, green touches to an office can seem like an unnecessary additional expense, especially for new businesses or small start-up operations. With a fully-furnished serviced office, all of this has already been taken care of. They come elegantly appointed with carefully selected plants and artwork to create the most positive working environment possible.
Where you work has a significant impact on how you work, your productivity and ability to focus. This means that the office environment, both physical and cultural, is of extreme importance to the success of a thriving business. and how you can create a positive environment for your staff without additional costs.
See! I told you all that scrolling through LinkedIn was work related!