These days, it’s not only media headlines imploring companies to improve their workplaces — facilities managers, designers and company leaders are seeing the connection between work and the workplace and taking steps to tighten that connection. Research supports this move, proving that great spaces and workplace culture are critical for maintaining employee engagement — something with a direct impact on both talent attraction and retention, and ultimately, on the company’s bottom line.
Companies looking for ways to improve their workplaces should consider several cultural and environmental elements for improvement. The Steelcase 360 Global Workplace Report found the following factors significantly impact engagement rates:
- Freedom to move around throughout the day
- Choice and control over where they work
- Freedom to change postures
- Freedom to easily and freely express and share ideas
- Feel relaxed and calm
Want this kind of office? Here are 5 things to work on to improve your workplace:
1. Incorporate new conference room ideas
Conference rooms have officially loosened their ties and opened the windows to new possibilities. Today’s group gathering spaces have moved solidly into gorgeous, curated spaces that blend residential features with corporate functionality. To improve your conference room, consider chairs with metallic legs or bold, patterned upholstery for a fresh take on your space. Anchor your space with a large rug to add warmth, absorb sound and add definition. Campfire Big Table offers a modern take on conference rooms by creating a natural group work area. Big Table is available in both seated and standing height, and with an optional drawer for discrete storage. Bivi Freestanding Trunk provides a stunning place to park a coffee carafe and doubles as a media console for content sharing.
2. Add colorful furniture
In a world defined by personality and individuality, color is always a good idea. Campfire Big Lounge provides an expansive canvas for colors, and patterns pop on Jenny Low chairs in lounge areas. Steelcase’s PerfectMatch program effortlessly applies virtually any color in the world to turnstone’s Bivi Desk, making it easy to showcase your personality or brand. Layer color and texture with accessories like pillows, artwork, lamps and lampshades, rugs and throws for a rich, residential feel in the office.
3. Keep surfaces tidy
Ideal collaborative zones should be distraction-free so groups can focus and share ideas freely when moving through the creative process. Additional storage options, like Bivi Depot, give workers additional room to store projects and keep desktops mess-free. Need office and desk organizing ideas? Check out our infographic for 20 quick ways to get organized in 10 minutes or less.
4. Add collaborative office furniture
Integrating collaborative office furniture to the workplace is more than adding a large table to an open space. Furniture that’s truly collaborative should promote easy content sharing, impromptu meetings and culture building in the workplace. The turnstone Bivi Transaction Top is designed to allow teams to gather together quickly at standing height and maintain momentum without stopping to adjust furniture or leave the space to look for a new meeting location. Campfire Paper Table brings people together around its innovative paper top, and is the perfect companion to turnstone’s Buoy — a whimsical, mobile rocking chair that engages the core.
5. Build an innovative culture
We’ve heard much of it before: Innovative cultures have empowered, engaged employees who know how to fail fast and embrace risks. But what we don’t hear much about is the importance trust and listening plays in all of this. Recently, Forbes magazine spoke to Steelcase CEO, Jim Keane, and reported:
“Keane said one of his primary objectives was to listen more, so leaders could move away from making decisions themselves and instead think of themselves as curators of culture – shaping an organization that helps other people make better decisions.”
Allowing people to make better decisions requires trust, and results in agility, creativity and finally, innovation.