While eco-friendly has been used to describe choices from light bulbs to windows in offices, some evidence suggests that eco-friendly office climates can promote worker productivity.
Since access to natural light can be key for individuals working indoors, opening up spaces can allow for more light throughout the workspace. Open spaces also support collaborative work, promoting creativity and communication. Open areas may be a benefit, but so is effectively using the space in an office building. To accommodate more open space in the middle of the room, it may be necessary to provide work areas with a functional, but minimalist, approach. Floating desks can attach easily to any wall surface and provide much needed workspace without sectioning off a room or taking up leg room.
Increased collaboration and focus on large-scale ideas can support productivity and lead to additional opportunities for employee training. Such positivity can support not only the company's reputation, but also lead to improved employee attitudes and create a cycle of positive interactions within the community at large. This 'virtuous cycle' can benefit the environment through eco-friendly modifications, as well as aid in the creation of a highly productive business environment. Green companies often report a high number of qualified applicants for open positions, and improved employee performance by up to 16% from companies that have not voluntarily 'gone green.'
While redesigning a workspace may seem to be a daunting task, many individuals report that even simple changes revitalize the work force. Rearranging existing furniture and items is a simple, no cost, method of altering the environment. After making a physical change, take inventory of items that appear to limit communication and open spaces. Consider modifying the environment with new seating, particularly well-designed and socially responsible pieces. Add to the existing environment, being sure to allow for areas of collaboration, as well as individual work spaces. Benches are one option to provide less bulk, but additional seating, in a given area. Nesting tables can be easily stacked to take up less space until needed for group work or meeting space. Implement eco-friendly options into these purchases such as items made with recycled aluminum, or re-purposing existing items.
For additional ideas, or more information on any of the pieces discussed here, please contact us. We would be happy to discuss some of the recent, eco-friendly solutions we've developed for spaces like the Ross Perot Museum of Science and Nature in Dallas, TX.