4 Subtle Elements That Influence Workplace Productivity
A happy worker is a productive worker. People often overlook how an unpleasant office environment can affect their mood and disposition at work. Research has established that happier employees produce more valuable output during working hours, and that usually begins with a comfortable working environment. Take a look at these four scientifically proven factors to help boost your team’s morale and efficiency over the course of a day.
Project: Iress Singapore (Images courtesy of OSCA)
Imagine spending eight hours a day cooped up in a tiny and unconducive cubicle, with dimly lit fluorescent lights being your only source of lighting. As it turns out, studies have shown that a lack of natural light in office environments can perpetuate abnormal sleep activity amongst staff. Take a look at your office lighting – are you constantly soaked in artificial lighting with minimal exposure to sunlight? If your answer is yes, perhaps this may explain why you often have to fight to stay awake at work.
Regularly having access to natural or bright light basis is a good way to reinvigorate an otherwise sluggish workforce. An office space replete with open windows allows for copious amounts of sunlight to pass through – just what you need to tune your body clock such that it stays aligned with day and night. This way you get a good night’s sleep and wake up feeling refreshed and energised to begin the day. An alternative to sunlight would be to install blue-tinted, bright lighting to ensure staff have abundant lighting to keep working productively.
Project: Iress Singapore (Images courtesy of OSCA)
Many office spaces can appear extremely dingy. Just look at those dirty white walls, gloomy ceiling panels and dull, standardised workplace cubicles – harbingers of a lackadaisical, unmotivated workforce. The solution to this apparent conundrum has everything to do with colour psychology. While you do not want to go over the top painting every wall an eclectic mix of bright hues, incorporating splashes of colors into a monotonous office space can have different effects on employee morale and productivity.
Aiming to cultivate a peaceful and calming work environment? You may want to experiment with shades of blue and green. Blue is known for its soothing and relaxing qualities, perfect for de-stressing when you have too much on your plate. Green, the colour of nature, provides you with the stability needed to keep up at work, be it meeting deadlines or having to manage a gazillion projects simultaneously. Looking to fuel creativity? Yellow may just be what you need to stimulate the mind and come up with fresh, exciting ideas. Meanwhile red is associated with passion and determination, giving you renewed energy to trudge on just as you are about to lose your train of thought. Whichever colours you decide on, the key is to always find the right balance of hues that will positively impact you and your team’s responses and work ethic.
Project: FCM Travel Singapore (Images courtesy of OSCA
Anyone working in an office environment ought to be familiar with the incessant noises that travel in the workplace throughout the day. Office noises can vary from something as subdued as the background noise of people speaking in hushed tones and the continual clicking of pens to loud co-workers and even the roaring sounds of vehicles zooming by. These auditory disturbances can affect your ability to concentrate on the task at hand and you may find your productivity plummet. Unfortunately, working in a communal space means it is rare if not impossible to attain complete silence. For this reason, large open plan offices are losing popularity to closed offices with fewer people.
If you happen to work in an open office environment, there are certain practices you can implement to mitigate office noises. Consider using sound-proof partitions such as sliding doors to break the open space up into smaller sections. In this case, noise emitted from any given area will be impeded by the partitions from travelling across the entire office space and instead be contained within that particular section.
You may choose to leave the doors close if you wish to create a quiet environment or leave them open if you intend to engage in an open discussion with colleagues from a separate section. Another viable solution would be to offer some semblance of ambient noise such as soft, soothing music at a consistent volume. This helps drown out distracting noises to a certain degree.
Project: FCM Travel Singapore (Images courtesy of OSCA)
Have you ever felt that the office was too cold or too hot for your comfort? You could be freezing one minute and then suffocated by heat the next. Turns out you are not alone in experiencing this phenomenon. In fact, employees around the world have reported about temperatures within their workplaces being either too hot or too cold, inhibiting their overall productivity. To create an ideal temperature where employees can work both efficiently and effectively, your air conditioning should be set to between 22 to 26 degrees Celsius.
While various researchers have presented differing results on the optimum temperature for a workplace environment, peak productivity appears to be around 25 degrees Celsius. It is critical to note that the ideal temperature for peak productivity diverges from person to person. You may work best at a certain temperature while a colleague may be shivering in the cold and another sweating in the heat, both of whom are unable to concentrate under these circumstances. The takeaway here is to calibrate the ideal average temperature to identify a perfect value, where you and the team can reach your collective potential.