X Level Office has changed its name to Novel Coworking, a name that more accurately represents what we're about: Partnering with our clients to provide the space and resources they need to innovate and write their story. It’s our hope that as each of our members pens their future in our space, Novel Coworking can provide the blank pages for their success.

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People put a lot of thought and effort into making their homes welcoming and relaxing, yet many offices have little personality. As a manager or owner of a company, look at your current office space and ask yourself, is this appealing? Would you want to come to work there every day?

Companies are never afraid to talk about  how they value their employees and are striving to improve conditions. However, there is rarely anyone holding companies accountable when they make these statements. As a result, most employees simply roll their eyes and move the email or memo to the trash, considering it yet another broken promise. Investing money in the workplace environment is a visible demonstration of your commitment to the staff. However, rather than designing a new office layout that looks good, why not utilize some of these tips and ideas which will not only improve staff morale, but will also increase efficiency.

 

Consider The Seating Plans

Although there has been a huge switch away from the tiny impersonal cubicles, a large working space with endless tables is not especially conducive to productivity either. Also consider where people will be sitting all day. You don’t want workers to feel vulnerable because they are sitting with their back exposed. Similarly, don’t make someone sit in an area with poor lighting. Though, it is not just the layout of the office that you need to consider. Strategize the best way to align your different departments. This article provides some great insight into the logic of how one company designed their seating plan, and it should give you some food for thought.

 

Organize Anonymous Interviews With Your Staff

Very few employees will be openly critical about the issues or design problems within the office. This presents a problem, because it is impossible to fix problems that you do not know that exist. Organize an anonymous survey or a series of interviews with an outside firm, and ask the pertinent questions. Provided your employees have total faith in the anonymity of their answers, you will quickly learn a lot of valuable information that you can then take action with.

 

Consider Your Benefits Package

There are plenty of ways, besides salary, to incentivize workers. Companies can take steps to improve office productivity and morale, and even to improve the health and fitness of their employees. Many offices are now introducing comfortable furniture, such as bean bags. Others have gyms, enabling and encouraging staff to train during the work day. Although this may seem counterintuitive, evidence shows that when staff feel valued and respected, they become more loyal to the company and are less inclined to look for other employment opportunities. As they become healthier, their concentration and energy levels will also increase.

 

Color Schemes

Most people are now more aware of the psychological benefits of color, yet a lot of offices still have bland, uninspiring color schemes. In areas where concentration and focus are required, the color scheme should be relaxing and mellow, but in areas where the work is more repetitive and potentially uninspiring, companies should consider energetic and motivational color schemes.

A little bit of paint does not cost a great deal of money, and it could even be a great idea for the managers to come in over the weekend and paint the walls themselves. Take a few photographs of the process, and let the staff see them, as it is a physical demonstration of your commitment to their welfare and happiness. Little examples of effort will go a long way in gaining your staff’s respect and making them feel valued.

 

At Level, we are not only committed to providing the best coworking spaces, but we are also highly engaged in the psychology of the office environment. We are continually updating the blog with new information, ideas and suggestions, so come back regularly and let us inspire you and your company.