Many office spaces now recognise the value of a first impression. In terms of your work environment, this can mean having welcoming reception and common areas.
In many modern offices, corporate functionality has been softened with careful lighting, attractive, nice furniture, bright colours, and even inspirational corporate art.
Add to this decent coffee from an espresso machine and you are starting to see spaces that rival boutique hotels for a sense of style combined with comfort.
But is all as it seems?
In the actual workspaces occupied and used by employees there may be a very different environment, one of tangled cables, improvised work stations, general mess and, in some cases, borderline chaos.
The Negative Workplace Environment
Research indicates that:
- Only 41% of employees feel aligned with the goals of the organisations they work for
- 36% of employees are likely to leave their jobs within a year
The work environment affects how engaged employees feel, and employees who are not engaged are unlikely to feel motivated.
Poor working conditions can have a big, negative impact on employees, with basic elements such as lighting, if poor, impairing people’s concentration and damaging their overall health
Also, factors such as inadequate heating, or cooling, systems can affect productivity.
A good physical work environment can determine how connected an employee feels to their employer and, ultimately, has an impact on their performance.
Consider the contrast, if the public-facing aspects of a building such as its reception are clean, well thought-out and welcoming; but where the staff spend most of their working day is what amounts to a toxic work environment.
What does that say about the brand values of a business or organisation to its employees, the people it should be investing in?
Small Changes for Big Gains
While a poor working environment can have a negative impact on the wellbeing and performance of employees, measures to improve it do not necessarily need to be drastic.
There are elements that work when brought in, such as plants, and factors to do with tidiness and creating a better sense of order.
One such example is providing more accessible power sources, such as desktop sockets or wireless chargers.
With so many contemporary workspaces being both device-heavy and communications-reliant, making sure people can share their space with hardware comfortably and effectively is essential
British manufacturer CMD specialises in solutions for integrating power and media access for today’s office workers.
Their spokesperson has this to say:
“It’s vital to remove visible clutter, including documents but also trailing cables. Make sure everyone has access to the right equipment for doing their job, including convenient plug sockets and charge points. If plug-in and go is your work culture, then be sure you enable your employees to do it effectively. Take as much of the everyday hassle out of the workplace as possible.”
A cluttered workspace affects how people think, behave and perform. Staff need to feel comfortable but also need the ability to focus and concentrate on tasks.
A tidier office will help them to do this, and it better aligns their experience with the outward brand values of their employer.