5 Innovative Ways To Redefine The Workplace
There’s a growing awareness of companies realising how their workplace environment is significantly impacting their staff’s productivity, rather than just how many hours they are at their desk.
But trying to set up the workplace as a strategic tool which contributes to collaboration, growth and increased productivity is easier said than done.
What works successfully varies from one office to the next. It also depends on the company culture, as well as how employees prefer to work.
Here are five evergreen and innovative ways to redefine the workplace.
1. Set up hot desks
With the increase of laptops and wi-fi, employees now no longer are required to be tied down to a single desk to complete their work. They are free to move around the office more and utilise the space which best suits their current task. They can do all this while bringing their workspace with them, thanks to technology like Dropbox, Slack and much more.
Some businesses have decided to take flexible workspaces to the next level, by removing all personal desks. They have replaced traditional workspaces with a hot desk configuration, where employees don’t have an assigned desk and can work from anywhere in the office. This includes desks with monitors, to open tables, to more informal spaces like a chair or couch.
2. Portable desks
Instead of moving away from personal desks for hot desks, another alternative is to use portable desks. Everyone can still keep their own space, but the desks can be reconfigured when required. This gives employees the best of both worlds. With desks that fit together like a jigsaw puzzle and can be retracted, reworked, and moved anytime they wish to. Portable desks offer the ultimate in collaboration, flexibility, and mobility.
3. Create overlap zones
The University of Michigan conducted research where they found that scientists who ran into each other in a shared space, known as a “zonal overlap” were more likely to collaborate.
By creating zones to encourage unplanned employee interactions, it can lead to improved employee performance and inspire more collaboration. It also is effective at knocking down barriers and ‘silos’ between employees.
4. Pets in the workplace
There’s a lot of debate around allowing pets into the workplace. Does it improve the workplace or hamper productivity? According to a study by study by the Virginia Commonwealth University, having pets in the office can help to improve work-life balance, increase social engagement amongst team members, and provides an excellent way to de-stress.
Pets may also help people focus on their work. Rather than worrying about what their puppy is up to home alone, or if they forgot to top up the water or food before they left in a rush in the morning.
5. Greenery & Plants
It’s no secret that spending time in nature and outside in sunlight makes people feel better, positive, and recharged. The same goes for bringing some of the outdoors into an office space according to research from Cardiff University’s School of Psychology. This study finds, by adding plants and greenery into an office, it doesn’t just make employees healthier and happier, it has been shown to improve productivity by up to 15%.
Implementing some, or all of these ideas can help redefine the workplace into an innovative and collaborative environment.