Average working adults spend a great deal of their daily lives at work, where they are exposed to the same environment day in day out.
When we are exposed to the same thing every day, boredom is inevitable, especially if we are working in a stale, stuffy office. This can subsequently demotivate us from doing our best, or even from showing up for work.
If that is the case, we need to take steps to ensure that the physical environment in which we work is not only conducive for productivity, but also feels as comfortable as home.
Let there be light!
The lighting in your office space influences the overall feel of your working environment, as well as your alertness in the workplace.
Research has shown that people who constantly work under artificial lighting are more exhausted at the end of the day compared to those who work under natural light.
Obviously, it is impossible to move your workspace outdoors or avoid artificial lighting completely. But by drawing back the blinds every once in a while, letting some sunlight in may help you be more alert and focused.
Shuffle things around
Furniture in the office space should be organised in such a way that makes everything easy to find or navigate through.
If you aren’t allowed to re-position your desk or seating in any way, you could instead organise items on your desk to avoid clutter.
Everything should have its own place to return to after use. A tidy desk can make a significant difference in the way you work. As they say, “tidy desk, tidy mind”.
A breath of fresh air
Good ventilation is vital in an office environment.
Although its effects may not be immediate, poor ventilation can and will affect us over time.
In a poorly ventilated space, employees may begin to feel symptoms like nausea, headaches and dizziness, and fatigue just to name a few. This is known as sick building syndrome, or SBS.
Although SBS does not cause any serious harm, its effects can be debilitating and even depressing for employees.
To ensure that your office space is properly ventilated, you can open the windows to air out the office every morning. This gives everyone a chance to get a breath of fresh air instead of stale, poorly circulated air.
Even though the environment in which we work can influence us, we should also know how to adapt to different surroundings.
At the end of the day, we should be able to consistently produce quality work while taking steps to improve our working space.
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Published in English daily The Star, Malaysia, 28 February 2015