Nobody likes working in an oppressive looking work environment. Anybody who has ever had to work in a cubicle can tell you this. Not matter how much you spice it up with personal effects, it is still always going to be a grey box. The inside of your work buildings matter more than you think.
A worker’s mental space is where all the real heavy lifting goes on. If your employees aren’t stimulated in a positive way, then they’ll begin to crash. The design can go a long way to providing the needed stimulation for these people.
It’s wise for all business to think hard about the design choices. Even if you are a start up too. Sometimes everything can depend on the office layout, especially with an impending deadline.
Let’s start with the lighting. A lot of businesses go for overhead tungsten lighting. While it does provide an adequate light coverage, it is never going to be any good on the eyes. It some ways it is an oxymoron. It makes you see better, but also worse.
Let’s say for the sake of argument you’ve got a big plan in the works. It involves a lot of people working long hours. Say for instance it’s a product launch, and said launch is rapidly approaching.
You’ve got one team working on deliverance. One doing regular marketing, another on search engine marketing. You may even have some people from manufacturing putting in an appearance.
Can all these teams work to the best of their ability with glaring, harsh lights on them for over eight hours a day?
The lighting and the lighting of the computer are not going to do well for these people. They’ll either end up with aching and bloodshot eyes or a headache or migraine that prevents them from working at full capacity.
This could be a real productivity problem. Try to get as much natural light in as possible. It should negate some of the need for the overhead lighting. The windows should at least give something for people to look at to readjust their eyes.
Space is also an issue. Cramping people together never really works out. They’ll either be very uncomfortable or they’ll be overly friendly and talk often. Some office communication is fine, but chatting when working won’t fly.
You want to think about optimal space for performance, teamwork, and comfort. You don’t want workers distracted, but you also don’t want them to be too far away to work together. As for comfort, you’re generally due to get a more relaxed and productive worker if they are comfortable enough.
Heat and airflow are major concerns. Air flow will make it quite stuffy. With multiple computers and many people, the room can soon heat up and have its oxygen level lower. If the heat is up through artificial means, that could also cause the same effect.
A warm and low oxygen environment will affect the workforce. They’re liable to start feeling drowsy above all else. Later in the afternoon, productivity could begin to drop dramatically as people get sleepy.
Not only would the work get slower, it could get sloppier. Drowsy people are less likely to notice mistakes or errors.
Colors can also make the difference too. They may influence mood, or they may rebound or absorb sunlight. If you are in a building that gets a lot of sun, avoid black because of the heat and avoid white because of it rebounding light.
Choose your decor carefully. An environment can affect the work heavily if you let it.