Have you ever worked in an environment with depressing and dark cubicles? Not exactly a mood booster is it? More offices are now moving towards an Open Door Policy, which comes with an open-aired office space to promote a more collaborative co-working environment. An Open Door Policy encourages openness and transparency between employees and managers—so why not do the same with work areas? Are you looking for office space ideas? Read on to learn more about the five rules for creating a collaborative space design for your business.
Rule #1: Tear Down Those Walls
Remove the high-walled cubicles and actually allow the sun to shine on your desk plant once in a while! Cubicles recently turned 50 a few years ago, according to Business Insider, and boy, what a life it had! They may have worked in the 80’s or ’90s, but in today’s workplace, instead of increasing productivity, they can cause low morale. Many companies today are choosing opened collaboration over isolation for this reason. Tearing down those cubicle walls helps design that collaborative space for organizations—so why not try a cubicle-free space?
Rule #2: Let There Be Light (and Color)
Light-filled offices usually boost the mood of workers and can make workers feel like they want to collaborate more (plus it’s easier to see those data sheets!) than a dreary dark office. A boost of Vitamin D also is good for the soul. According to an article in Entrepreneur, How the Color of Your Office Impacts Productivity, bland gray, beige, and white offices induced feelings of sadness and depression in women. Colors such as light green or blue can improve efficiency and focus. By adding light and color to a business space, organizations can create a collaborative working space that can actually improve efficiency.
Rule #3: Bring in Modern and Ergonomic Furniture
Out with cubicles and regular desk chairs and in with modern benches, community tables, yoga balls, and standing work desks. Having ergonomic furniture helps with those grueling work hours due to the comfort they bring, and in turn, can lead to more productivity from employees. By bringing in ergonomic furniture to the workspace, it is also easier to collaborate with one another in a comfortable setting, and the collaborative workspace furniture bolsters more of an open dialogue to bounce off ideas with peers. Creating a collaborative office space can be as simple as swapping out the furniture, and the change can have positive effects on the group dynamic of organizations.
Rule #4: Designate Multiple Common Work Areas
When you are at home, most of your family gathers in the living room to watch TV, relax, and discuss family plans—so why not build a “living room” space at work to gather around and share ideas? Having a common, designated area is the best way to stimulate collaboration within the office and create a collaborative space. It makes it easy to pull up a chair and discuss the status of a project one-on-one or quickly pull in people from different departments to discuss a larger scale project. These common areas can be a gateway to a better work culture, where people are looking to find a more interactive workplace. Creating spaces to foster working as a team will help create that better work culture and collaborative environment for your business.
Rule #5 Provide an Outlet Area
Not only should common areas be in the workplace but also in the break room or game room where people can unwind and get to know coworkers in a more relaxed environment. After all, water cooler stories make the best stories, right? Some companies even go as far as having game rooms, beer fridges, bars, free food, and ping pong areas. Social interaction with coworkers outside of the work realm gives off great benefits to have better chemistry when collaborating on work. This simple change in office design can create a space that gives employees the location and time to socialize, which can help increase collaboration.
These are five rules to plan a collaborative space for your office. Each workplace is different with unique employees, culture, purpose, and space, so the optimal design for a workplace will vary. Regardless, these simple rules will help you start to design your space to help foster collaboration and creativity.
At Bluescape, we have state-of-the-art collaborative workspaces designed by Haworth, with modern and inspiring designs that help develop creativity in the workplace. With open-aired community work tables and ergonomic standing work desks, it sets the mood for an easy-to-collaborate workplace—and that’s what Bluescape is all about.