To keep great employees the employer needs to have a work environment that is both healthy and happy for them to come to on a daily basis, a place that helps them thrive. One thing is certain, having a comfortable work station is a must’ and quality seating helps even more.
Check out ergonomic office chairs from Everything for Offices today.
In the following article we found some interesting ideas about workplace design that you may find helpful.
Companies are, in a way, married to their workplaces—and like with buying jewellery for a wedding, there’s much less waste and more happiness if you get the design right the first time
Companies are wedded to their workplaces, much in the way many office workers are married to their spouses. Let’s think about it. Most of us start dating as young adults, or we might be introduced to a series of potential spouses by our family members. (A few choose to simultaneously pursue both dating rituals, but that is less advisable).
Some find a life partner early on, while others have several relationships before they are ready to sign the dotted line, with the right person. Every so often, the marriage ends sooner than perhaps anticipated, and both parties go their own way.
Companies share a similar “mating ritual” with their workplaces. Start-ups like to rent offices, not buy them, when they begin life. They move in and out of spaces, over their adolescent years. They grow upwards, sideways and even downwards. Eventually, they stabilize and identify their perfect home: a workplace with the right spatial configuration, location and budget. Once a company is wedded to a particular office, it tends to stay put. Even when it expands headcount, it is usually the offspring that moves to a new facility, not the mothership.
Of course, they are times when a workplace “divorce” is unavoidable, when a city mutates in a different direction. Witness the mass migration northwards of Mumbai’s financial sector, from its southern edge at Fort and Nariman Point to the gentrified business districts of Lower Parel and the Bandra Kurla Complex. But even when a company divorces itself from one workplace, it remarries another, physically and psychologically anchoring itself to a new sliver of land.
The marriage metaphor highlights two points. First, a workplace interior fitout is an infrequent phenomenon, and often the biggest source of capital expenditure for a company. Like any major one-time asset, e.g. buying jewellery for a wedding, there’s much less wastage and more happiness if you get the design right the first time.
The metaphor also illustrates the long-term challenge of keeping the “marriage” alive. Workplace air quality can become stale, as quickly as those clichéd husband-and-wife jokes. Companies and workplaces need to work just as hard as couples, to prevent monotony from taking over the relationship.
The answer lies in nurturing intangibles. A courtship might be consummated over tangibles—food, drink or travel—but marriages are held together by intangibles. Shared values, thoughts and emotions are invisible bonds between two spouses. These intangible assets are equally mirrored in the marriage between companies and their workplaces.
Intangible assets and tangible workplaces
Over the last decade, my writing in Mint has led me to examine the evolving relationship between companies, their workplaces, their leaders and their people. As I conducted my interviews, I discovered that chief executives and their companies rely heavily on tangible workplace infrastructure to augment four of their most intangible assets.
The primary purpose of a well-designed workplace is to nourish personal energy—individual comfort and well-being, to maximise employee potential and productivity. Next, workplaces are tools to build organisational capital, i.e. to strengthen and shape work cultures, structure and processes. Third, an office is a potent platform to communicate brand values. And finally, some progressive leaders have begun to think of workplaces as a resource to sustain the environment.
Workplace design can enhance these four intangible assets in five specific ways.
Invest in comfort and well-being to maximise productivity and potential
It is always astonishing how many companies aspire to be world class, but feel they cannot afford the basic essentials of a comfortable workplace: enough legroom for the average employee, ergonomic furniture, adequate light, ventilation and storage. So much so that when any company truly invests in its employees’ well-being, it is worth applauding.
When moving into a new corporate headquarters in Mumbai, Shikha Sharma, the managing director of Axis Bank Ltd, one of India’s largest private banks, provided each employee with an ergonomic chair, regardless of stature, “to demonstrate flatness and reduce the impact of hierarchy”, she said. The ₹45,000 Liberty chair (as it was priced at the time) from American manufacturer Humanscale expressed her commitment to prioritise employee comfort over other considerations.
Consumer apparel giant Adidas adopted global spatial standards when moving into their Indian headquarters in Gurugram, Haryana, with a generous square-foot-per-person ratio of over 200 sq. ft. “You see a lot of open spaces. Between desks you will see space. Between rows you will see space. Between one wing and another wing you will see space. Every floor has a nice breakout area. The overall theme is a very open, transparent office where people can connect,” said Arijit Sengupta, senior director of human resources.
Lighting can be an overlooked design essential. Pharmaceuticals multinational Johnson & Johnson installed adjustable, task-based lighting for each workstation in their Mumbai corporate headquarters, to promote individual well-being.
Storage is also another unforeseen workplace error. Cardboard boxes of product samples can pile up in highly visible areas such as the company reception because of inadequate storage provision. Adidas pre-empted this problem by turning storage into a design feature. Custom-built storage units were located adjacent to workstations to encourage team members to keep their marketing sample in check.
Companies are also beginning to be more attentive to individual health and wellness. Cafeterias with healthy food options and well-equipped gyms are excellent wellness measures. A centrally placed, well-maintained staircase is another time-tested design solution to keep employees moving. Other well-being amenities, such as on-site medical care and a crèche facility for young children, are becoming more popular among larger companies.
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Article source here: 5 Tips to a Better Office Enviroment