There’s been a lot of talk on how the new wave of workers (namely millennials) are shaking the traditional office culture with their demands for work-from-home options, decent internet connection, more vacation leaves, and beautiful office space, aside from decent salary. Yes, even the office design is not spared from their scrutiny given that a lot has been said about how work environment affects mood and productivity. Thanks to Google, Facebook, and Apple who made the whole idea of carefully planned and beautiful workspaces mainstream.
The box-type, white-walled office spaces are now considered an indicator of a business doomed to fail. The office, more than being a place to work, has now become a symbol of a dynamic and progressive company or startup. If you’re a business owner looking to update your office space and office furniture or a startup founder looking at setting up your headquarters, examining your business’s core and purpose would definitely influence how your office space would look like.
If you are just about to start your own business, there are crucial details that you should not miss. Here’s a guide that could help business owners and startup founders like you get down to the very basic elements you need to consider when establishing your business. Here’s the link: Starting a business and setting up an office to match. For business owners who are looking to refresh or update your company, this can serve as your checklist. The guide contains practical tips on the nitty-gritty that most company CEOs and business owners often overlook, including designing your office space.
So what do you have to pay attention to when designing your office space? Remember FIT – Form and Function, Investment, and Timelessness.
Form and Function
Open workspace or cubicles? Sitting or standing desks? The variety of options can be confusing and each has its pros and cons, but what will guide you in deciding which is which, is determining the behavior you would like to get from your employees. It is important for business owners and startup founders to understand that more than just plain aesthetics, office design is also about function.
Open workspaces may encourage collaboration among employees. This is good for companies with a flat organization structure that encourages open communication. Open workspaces also allow more employees to fit in a smaller office space. On the other hand, work cubicles can promote concentration and focus among employees. It provides a sense of privacy with less distractions.
For sure, not all employees would agree to a single type of office setup, but ideally, office space should be flexible enough to accommodate varying employee preference and temperaments.
Price is a big factor in designing your workspace. Most business owners and startup founders place office materials such as furniture as an afterthought. You cannot expect cheap office furniture to last. More so, you do not realize how much you sacrifice more when you use poorly designed and poorly built furniture for your office. Not only do these kinds of furniture break apart easily, but their poor design and ergonomics also cause discomfort for those who use them. As mentioned in the article Starting a business and setting up an office to match, “a badly set-up, cheaply made or poorly designed office, will leave you in pain, distracted, frustrated and with potentially long-lasting health issues.”
When buying materials such as desks and chairs for your office, think of it as an investment for your workforce. You owe your company’s growth to your employees, so you might as well make it easier for them to be productive by using well-thought of and quality tools. You may consider this a big expense on your part, but in the long run you will see that investing on quality office materials is just cost-effective.
Having an updated and upgraded office space is more than just following a fad. When planning and designing your office space, you look at how your each detail in your office can contribute to the productivity of your employees and the success of your business in the long run. So investing on quality desks, chairs, and accessories should factor in the number of years they can be used. You should aim at investing in timeless design since it is costly to update your office space every so often.
Timelessness surely is more than just aesthetics. It is also about built-quality and efficiency in design. What makes an office design timeless is also its flexibility to be customizable depending on the company’s needs. There are available office furniture in the market such as desks that can transform from being a sitting desk to a standing desk. There are also office furniture that could easily be mixed and matched depending on the design of the office space and the number of employees.
You and your employees are working hard enough to grow your company. You deserve to have an office space that is reliable to accommodate challenging work demands, while providing enough comfort for employees. Ultimately, your office space reflects the passion, grit, and the motivation that fuel your business to grow.
Lastly we want to cover style. All of the above is almost meaningless without the right consistency of style alongside your form and function. Pick an office furniture style and stick to it. Carry that look throughout your entire space. There is room for a bit of deviation but that style you’ve chosen from day one should be seen in all aspects of your space. Whether “rustic” or “modern” use those elements throughout the space to ensure cohesiveness. This will ultimately tell your clients and visitors you know how to run a business. Clients tend to read between the lines, and the lines in this conversation say “I run a tight ship, you should be doing business with me”
Take these tips and build your business with the panache of Google or any other Silicon valley company, and maybe you’ll be worth a trillion dollars someday too.