How to create the perfect office environment

Lee Biggins outlines the steps you can take to creating the perfect office environment for your small business.

Your office environment has a huge impact on staff, and a negative or crowded workspace can have a knock-on effect on productivity. Creating the perfect working environment is important for the success of your business and can go some way to improving staff retention rates. By building the best possible workspace and company culture, you can keep employees happy and motivated, and there are some very simple ways you can go about achieving this. Below I will outline the steps you can take to creating the perfect office environment.

Utilise the space

Making sure the office itself is well laid out and appealing is important. It might seem trivial as employees are there to work, but untidy or unclean facilities and crowded or dingy offices can have a negative impact on your workers’ wellbeing and productivity. Start off simple, make sure there’s plenty of natural light and perhaps some flowers or plants around the office. Creating an aesthetically pleasing environment will keep staff feeling motivated throughout the day. Also be sure to have comfortable break areas where your employees can go to unwind in their free time.

Choose an effective layout

Think carefully about the way your floors are laid out. In the earlier stages of your business this may not be so important, but as your workforce grows this will require more thought. Some offices allow for hot-desking, this is one approach. But if you choose to have your staff follow a set seating plan think carefully about who works closest and how the floor should be arranged.

Ensuring that the floor is laid out in the most efficient manner will create a better flow and make it easier for staff to discuss their work with their team members, without being too disruptive. This will in turn lead to increased levels of productivity and make it easier for new comers or different departments to learn who and where everyone sits should they need to approach them to discuss work. Encouraging staff to get up and talk to one another is also important. These days it can be too easy to fall into a technical trap, and communicate solely via email instead of making the effort to speak to one another.

Create a culture of positivity

It’s not only the aesthetics that you need to take into consideration when pulling together the perfect office environment. Creating a happy and open culture is important, and communication is key here. By holding team building exercises and/or social events you can build a united and friendly workforce, aided by encouraging them to speak with one another (not just communicate online). You should also nurture a culture where employees feel safe talking to each other as well as approaching you if they need help.

This friendly and approachable atmosphere will be replicated across the office, and will help to create a great working environment. While your employees are there to work, it’s good to get a bit of a buzz going as they discuss the business and bounce ideas off one another. Having everyone work in silence can create quite a sombre mood, which again can have an effect on staff productivity, happiness and whether or not they want to stay in your company.

So to summarise, it’s important to consider both the look and feel of your workspace. Start by choosing a clean and simple layout, and ensure your office is bright and appealing. Encourage staff to talk and share ideas with one another and yourself, and create a friendly culture. This will add to the overall feel of a buzzing and happy workplace, all of which will lead to productive and passionate staff.

Lee Biggins is the founder of CV-Library.  

Further reading on office environment

Ben Lobel

Ben Lobel

Ben Lobel was the editor of from 2010 to 2018. He specialises in writing for start-up and scale-up companies in the areas of finance, marketing and HR.

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Office workspace

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