Image is everything, especially in the professional sector. If your startup regularly fields clients and customers, consider what your office atmosphere and décor is currently conveying. Are items strewn around the building, creating a sense of chaos? Have your office chairs seen better days? Does the paint on the walls have more cracks than a sidewalk? All of these reflect poorly on your business, and clients will associate rundown offices with less than stellar work—it’s a truth of life; we’re all visual creatures.
Keep Clutter to a Minimum
If you’re working with a smaller space, it’s important to be cognizant of maintaining a clear, clean work area. While it’s impossible to force employees and colleagues to clean their own space every day, you can provide resources that make any space more conducive to cleanliness and order. Provide proper office storage solutions from The Container Store, have janitorial staff come on a regular basis, and lead by example. Keep your office space clean and clear, and be sure to commend those in the office who do the same.
Create an Outdoor Area
News alert: spending all of our waking hours indoors isn’t the best for our health. It’s important to get some sun exposure during the day, if only for ten minutes to soak up some necessary Vitamin D. Crafting an outdoor area for employees can have a significant impact on company health and morale, and luckily outdoor improvements are relatively cheap. Check out Gardeners.com to find discounted gardening décor and supplies, purchase an inexpensive outdoor table and chairs, and encourage employees to spend a few minutes enjoying nature during the day.
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Bring Nature Indoors
On the other hand, suppose your office is in a high-rise building, or the middle of a business park. In these cases, outdoor hangout spaces are an impossibility, so turn the idea on its head and bring the outdoors inside with plants, vegetation walls, or flower deliveries. Nature has been said to improve creativity, and numerous studies have found that the presence of plants improves air quality, meaning multiple aspects of your employees’ lives will be improved. Happier employees result in more productive employees, so it’s a more-than-worthy investment.
Invest in Long Term Pieces
There are some areas of furnishing your office that should be considered worthy of a steeper investment, namely, that of furniture. Whether it’s desks for your employees, or a comfortable couch for a refined waiting room, it’s important to buy pieces that will withstand the test of time to avoid costly replacement. Online furniture retailers like Leather Furniture USA offer inexpensive, quality pieces of furniture that fit the bill without completely breaking the bank. It’s also wise to get matching pieces, as this sense of cohesion will help your office (and therefore, your overall brand and reputation) look more polished and put together .
Consider All the Senses
While aesthetics are important, it’s essential to pay attention to other senses, namely that of smell. Changing the scents around in your office can actually be used to the company’s advantage. Certain smells are correlated to improve levels of productivity, including lemon, lavender, and jasmine. Whether you achieve these scents through air fresheners or natural means, make sure you take individual allergies and preferences into account before investing in a stock of air scents.
Allow for Personalization
While modern minimalism works for some companies and employees, you may find encouraging a bit of personalization in décor works to create a happier company roster and a more interesting, appealing office design. An easy way to foster this customization is through individual art picks. Give employees a set amount of money to spend on a site like Minted.com. They can choose their favorite art styles, then provide their individual work areas with a bit of flair and color that will help boost morale throughout the day.
Creating a clean, neat, and trendy office décor scheme doesn’t need to cost thousands of dollars. Keep these budget-friendly design tips in mind and transform your startup into an oasis of creativity and productivity.