The traditional office culture has shifted. No longer is the office reminiscent of Mad Men or Office Space, or somewhere in between. Instead, the workplace is now one that is supposed to encourage hard work – of course – but also a place that employees are happy to walk into every day and do their best for themselves and the company.
This evolution of the workplace has been inspired by bases such as Facebook, Google, Tesla, and all the rest. Startups often want to recreate this kind of culture when designing their office, to fit into the hip new styles of the 21st Century workplace.
If you feel – or have been told – that your office could do with some modernization, or even just refreshing the place, then consider the following that will catapult the workplace into the 21st Century.
The type of lighting you have in and around the workplace may not seem like something that can affect productivity and employee health, but it does. If your office is filled with lights that are too dim or too bright, then your workers, and yourself, will suffer.
The lighting can have a direct effect on eye strain, which can lead to exhaustion as it messes with your body clock as well as lead to the development of health-related issues, such as headaches, migraines, and eye illnesses.
Fluorescent lights that are too bright will accelerate tiredness; this leads to a drop in productivity, leading to lethargy. A lack of natural light illuminating the office will do similar things. Ensuring that you install lighting and arrange the office in a way that will provide as much natural light as possible will make for a happy workplace, and save you money on electricity.
The type of facilities, such as toilets, water coolers, and ventilation can also provide problems if not adequately updated to modern standards. You don’t want your office to be too hot or too cold, and so ensure that you check the HVAC system is clean and working properly.
Furthermore, you might want to invest in new toilet partitions for both the men’s and women’s bathrooms. Getting rid of the old, perhaps graphited stall walls will not only freshen up the area but also improve the professional aesthetic you are hoping to achieve.
These types of facilities are a necessity for any office, not just a modern one. Your employees deserve to have adequate facilities that do not make them recoil in horror and feel forced to go across the road just to relieve themselves.
Having appropriate decor around the office space can do wonders for bringing your workplace into the 21st Century. That isn’t to say get rid of everything you have already, tear down the wallpaper and start all over – that sort of change is expensive, after all.
But, consider how you could make the office a more welcoming place. As mentioned, you want your employees to enjoy coming into the office; you want to have them happy to be at work. This is as simple as just changing up the decor, and adding things that make it a more relaxing (but not too relaxing) place to be.
In the past, companies have installed walled gardens with real plants. It is no good merely adding fake greenery in pots dotted around, but investing in legitimate foliage will not only clean the air but their heads, also. It will also add a splash of color to the office that might otherwise be dull and depressing.
And, finally, modernizing your office furniture will go a long way towards inspiring a more comfortable ambience to your office space. Employees need chairs that will be comfortable for them to sit in all day. The desks need to be the correct height – desks where you can modify height are perfect for this – and having an adequate seating area for breaks is a must to help them recharge
Your office furniture might just be one of the many things you are spending too much money on, and so updating this to something more in-line with the atmosphere you want to cultivate will not only ease your employees’ stress and help satisfaction, but also save you money.
Furthermore, just because your office has had the same layout since you moved in does not mean it needs to stay like it. Rearranging the office to help add more natural light, or improve that feeling of claustrophobia if everyone feels too close together will allow everyone to feel like they can breathe.
21st Century Office Man
Taking the steps to updating your office may seem like a task that will take forever, but you can’t put a limit on your employee happiness. Ensuring that you modernize the office will help with productivity, office camaraderie and more. It is vital that you present your office as a place that looks to the future, not gazes back into the past.