With the new emphasis on ‘startup culture’ and the different business philosophies it implies, plus millennials placing a strong emphasis on workplace enjoyment, many companies are looking more closely at their own office culture. While there are many factors that comprise a company culture, an undeniably large part of it is office layout and design.
How you design and create your office layout play a large role in what your company culture will be and how well team members will work.
Here are some key things to consider when considering the office layout of your small business:
Physical Disorganization Leads to Actual Disorganization
In creating the best work environment for team members, you want to give them a space that they feel comfortable and productive in.
An office with clutter, garbage on desks or overflowing from wastebaskets, disorganized seating arrangements and general untidiness can feel claustrophobic and could even be unsanitary.
Plenty of research has shown that clean work spaces make people feel more energized and fulfilled, which means they’re more likely to be productive in their environment.
Have processes in place for organization. This will do more than help you get organized; it will have a dramatic impact on office culture. For example:
- It might help to invest in a weekly cleaning crew to come in and take care of clutter and grime that an office naturally acquires over time.
- Make sure your team is reminded weekly (or even daily) about the importance of organization and keeping a tidy workspace. Signs that directly remind your team about cleaning up after themselves can be effective.
Corner Offices Can Have Some Drawbacks
This is a relatively recent issue, with startups beginning a new wave of leaders and CEOs who act as “one of the team.” This leads to less demand for corner offices and more demand for open office layouts where there are no doors and very little privacy.
This issue is pretty complex though. Maybe your company office isn’t a really casual hangout space, and that’s ok. Distinguishing the C-suite from the cubicles is still acceptable, especially when the two are not necessarily integrated in day-to-day operations.
The point with having leaders sit among their employees serves a couple different purposes: the first is open communication. Small organizations especially need to have top-down and bottom-up communication that is not intimidating or difficult to navigate. By having management exist as one with the rest of the company, you can create an atmosphere of openness and trust.
However, some companies simply work better when a leader has a clear distinction from other team members. It all depends on what you want the atmosphere and culture of your organization to be, and it can be done as simply as those in leadership positions having their own office, or grouped in with everyone else.
Seating people together can foster collaboration
If you want to create a company culture of collaboration and support, you should consider putting departments side-by-side, or have an open floor plan in your office.
However, if you’d rather have a culture of autonomy or independence, consider incorporating quiet work rooms for employees to hide away if/when need be.
Or you can always encourage employees to work from home a couple days a week. Whichever cultural value you choose to emulate in your business, it’s important to consider the actual physical layout of your office space.
It’s also important to ask everyone in the office from time to time about how changing things up may help them to do their jobs better, or enjoy their work a little more. That’s because happy employees often translate into happy customers, so any investment in your office space, culture, and employee happiness, is a solid business plan.
Looking for tips on how to improve your workplace environment? Williams & Kunkel CPAs offers expert business improvement advice. Call us today in Flower Mound at 972-446-1040 to have a chat.
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Source: Business 2 Community