5 ways to re-energise your office space

7th January, 2015

beats blue

An office is not always the most colourful or exciting of places to spend your time but it doesn’t have to be a dull environment full of white empty walls.

Whether it is a simple branded sticker, vinyl wall graphics or handy whiteboard with your brand logo there is almost no excuse not to jazz up your working environment. Think bright colours and stylish interiors - by just adding a touch of personality to the walls around you, you can re-energise your office space and it doesn’t have to break your budget.

Adopt a healthy work/life balance
With so many of us spending more time at work and the boundaries between work and home life becoming more intermingled, a need to encourage your staff to think creatively, get up, move around and adopt a healthy work/life balance has become far more crucial. Last year, The World Health organisation highlighted inactivity as the fourth biggest killer of adults proving that sitting and staring at a screen all day can have quite the negative impact on ones health.

Introducing an interactive wall space or creative zone can be a simple yet productive way of encouraging your staff to work away from the screen and get them up and about.

Now, if you are into your interior design in anyway you will probably quite enjoy trawling through photos of company headquarters such as Google’s HQ, with their many large open plan spaces, vibrant colours and “creative zones” that offer optimal work / play environments.

Stunning offices on a much more constrained budget
Inc.com recently shared their fourth annual list of the World’s Coolest Offices showcasing some awe inspiring spaces with "several of the winners building their stunning offices on a much more constrained budget.”

It might be worth scrolling through this list on your lunch break so you can take your time and dream away at these frankly awesome office spaces. 
Google Tel Aviv. Source: Fourth annual Inc World's Coolest Offices

For the majority of us the benefits found at Google are not necessarily at the forefront of our business decisions but there are still some relatively simple, less showy solutions you can consider for your office without breaking the bank. Even the smallest changes can demonstrate that you value your team and their wellbeing. Whatever you think will help you feel better in your office space, it’s worth throwing it open to your staff and ask them to offer up some ideas.

Tunnel slides aside; here we‘ve outlined 5 simple ideas to help you add a splash of life into your office space.

1. Vinyl Wall Graphics.

Let’s start with making something out of those boring, lifeless walls. Offices can never have enough writing surfaces and if like us you are regularly coming together to discuss ideas and formulate design concepts it makes so much sense to utilise that space in a creative, imaginative way.

Last year we decided to make use of the back wall in our studio.
Here we are in full DIY swing.

Rather than a whiteboard vinyl we opted to move away from the white walls and chose the classic blackboard – a great solution for us to make use of a previously wasted space. We plan to use the area to create mood boards for on going projects and brainstorming sessions.

Job Done.

Simple solutions.

There are a number of solutions to creating white or blackboard walls in the office. Our DIY approach simply used MDF and magnetic blackboard paint, which just required a couple of coats. If however your office lacks natural light then a whiteboard maybe a more suitable option. 

Another popular approach is installing a whiteboard vinyl wall sticker. This option is easy to apply with an adhesive backing to secure it to the wall. The dry wipe vinyl offers a smooth gloss surface that is super easy to clean and can be installed with ease. We have previously assisted a number of clients with the design and installation of vinyl wall stickers so if you are interested just give us a call to discuss your requirements and we will be happy to provide you with a quote. 

2. Add a splash of COLOUR

Colour psychology (study of colour) explores the way people are affected by different colour stimuli. Light and colour can hugely influence the way individuals perceive the area around them and of course perception of a colour can be viewed quite differently from one person to another.

Different colours can look significantly different under different lighting too, however, studies have shown colour evokes similar emotional reactions in most people.

Our designers in the studio have a good understanding of colour when it comes to brand identity or logo development - colours can truly define how your brand is perceived.

Source:The Logo Company. Colour emotion guide.

The theory of colour in brand identity may differ slightly when considering the colours you want to use in your office. If you research ‘productive office colour” you will generally find that blue is most widely used, with colours such as yellow and green being associated with creativity, broad thinking and inspiration. 

Beat Electronics.

Beats Electronics (One winner from the worlds coolest offices 2014) said of their co working zones "They are meant to have different atmospheres. People from one quadrant will walk over to use the blue one, for example, because it's peaceful and serene," "Red has more energy. The colours help create distinct locations."

3. Lighting

Not an area that we specialise in but we certainly do appreciate some good lighting. These days you would be hard pushed to find a coffee shop or new bar that hasn’t adopted the trend of exposed lighting, quirkily hung lights and elaborate looking bulbs and offices are also choosing to move away from that dreaded strip lighting opting for softer character lighting.

A couple of examples of coffee shops & offices using lighting in a creative way… 

Source Small Batch: Brighton

The Skype offices achieve a great balance of lighting design and practicality showing if you have the right kind of budget your office can be a far more innovative and creative with your space.

Skype offices Stockholm

4. Photo Murals.

Murals and photomontages are a popular and relatively simple answer to brighten up a dull office wall. Photos and graphics can transcend a brand identity and can be more effective than just plastering your wall with your logo or brand colours. 

Creative Agency Jess3. Source: 20 incredibly cool design office murals

Say what you really want with some interesting and engaging graphics and deliver your message to staff members and your visitor’s a-like.

You can also make a wall more interactive using magnetic dry wipe walls intergating a photo montages, diagram or a world map - great for travel agency offices. Sections of this substrate can be joined together to form large whiteboard walls. Another alternative is Foamex boards, which can be mounted with your brand colours and logos to add a bit of depth to a blank wall.

Source: Digibrand Office

Large areas of glass can be used to really help give your clients an insight into your business. Graphic window film helps you keep your brand story going by making for a highly interactive and vibrant office space as shown in the Digibrand office (image above).

5. Go green.

We have heard it all before but there is continuously on-going research proving that houseplants in the office can truly benefit your staffs health and their productivity.

Image source: Happy Interior Blog

A study reviewed in this guardian article revealed there is “evidence that office workers’ quality of life can be enriched by office landscaping that involves the use of plants that have no formal work-related function.“ 

The Psychologists behind the study concluded that employees who actively engage with their surroundings are better workers. The study showed that when plants were introduced to the office and placed so that each staff members could see a plant from their desk “employee performance on memory retention and basic test improved significantly”.Photographs and changes in light can also achieve a similar effect.
Take a look at the article and the full study

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