When you think about your office, is comfort one of the things that comes to mind? For many people, comfort is reserved for the home, and offices are designed to make you less comfortable in an effort to promote more efficiency. But does this method really work? Science suggests against it. A study by Cornell University found that a more comfortable office space increases employee productivity and makes them happier overall. So why are so many offices today designed to be uncomfortable, and what small changes can you make to change that?
There is nothing more uncomfortable than clutter. Whether your office houses a whole team of people or just you and your cat, it can be easy to accumulate stuff all over. A very simple way to make a space more comfortable is by cleaning. It also shows respect for the space if you are in a communal office space. In fact, keeping it tidy is one of our tips for working in an open office environment. If you are guilty of letting papers pile up, invest in a file cabinet for your office. If there are just a lot of random trinkets or decorations, try to minimize them. Designate a drawer or closet to keep any random stuff in. Working is often stressful already, and decluttering can relieve you of unnecessary stress during the day.
Invest in a quality chair or standing desk
If you prefer sitting, the chair you use will make or break your experience of comfort in the office. If you spend all day in the same folding office chair, it may be time to reevaluate. Even if a chair is not your biggest priority, being comfortable at work will make your work better and easier, so it helps out in more aspects of your life. When you start your search, look for an option with lumbar support, flexibility, and wheels. That gives you the option to move around easily and know you will be supported no matter what. If you are looking to be more active or try something new with your desk space, consider a standing desk. These trendy new options give you the freedom to sit and stand as you please, and put you into a more active category of employee. Standing desks are a great option for someone looking to make a more exciting change to their office space.
Ask for what you want
In this strange time of high employee turnover, managers are very aware of ensuring that their workplace is the best. Any strategist knows that comfort is highly motivating. As managers look to engage their employees, comfort will be a priority. Do not shy away from asking for things that will improve your experience at the job or in the space, because it is likely that it will get done. Want a new chair on the company’s dime? Just ask! The worst case scenario is that you get a “No” back. In search of a new desk organizer? Maybe your boss has a bunch in storage. There are a lot of small adjustments that could improve your time in the office that are worth the effort.
Do not underestimate the power of a plant
Plant parents know what is good. The power of plants in your workspace is hard to quantify. They increase the cozy factor, give your limp desk some life force, and add a splash of color. Who does not love seeing a bright green snake plant, cactus, or flower? Also, the pride in keeping a plant alive may be just the right prompt for a tired worker. No matter what you choose to change about your office space, prioritize bringing life back into it.