Designing a workplace that creates opportunities for workers to socialize extends beyond just communal spaces. Lighting, material choices and ambiance all play a role in creating a welcoming, healthy environment for employees to forge the meaningful relationships that are key to the modern office. While our modes of collaboration may look different in a post-COVID workplace, working together continues to be essential for inspiration and success — and safe staff socialization is the first step to forging the bonds that make it possible.
Read on to learn how modern office design can better support employee wellness by promoting relationships and encouraging social interaction.
Allwork notes that staff socialization and organic interactions should be at the core of successful workplace design. Despite the rise of messaging options making colleague communication easier, the value of face-to-face interactions can’t be replaced when it comes to creative collaboration.
Offering a flexible work environment is an easy way to encourage workers to move throughout the day and work in a way most comfortable to them. Business.com highlights the benefits of flexible offices that encourage employee movement, collaboration and communication – all of which increase productivity. These flexible, open spaces for gathering allow for more opportunities to meet, talk, and work face-to-face.
Offering spaces for employees to connect safely (such as outdoor areas) puts a more complete focus on wellness within the workplace. AZBigMedia.com examines how we can encourage a healthy lifestyle while also ensuring everyone feels welcome to work together.
By increasing natural light and adding elements of nature like plants to flexible workspaces, Business.com found that employee engagement and productivity increased by up to 15%. Making these changes creates a healthier overall work environment which invites a happier, more energized workforce to get up, move and take advantage of the flexible, bright workspaces to either collaborate in groups or or focus alone.
Gone are the days of individual, drab workspaces. Ladders reported in a Steelcase study that personalization of the workplace leads to a more streamlined workflow and greater collaboration among team members. Creating space for employees to freely shift furniture or other elements allows them to find new ways to use spaces together in social and collaborative ways.
Incorporating art into the office also has the potential to create a sense of connection with the local environment, fostering a sense of connection between employees. According to AZBigMedia.com, showcasing local artists can be a great way to bring together employees around common themes and create discussion points for workers taking advantage of public spaces in the office.
Looking for more insights on how office design will change in 2021? Explore the top trends we expect to see this year, get more tips for designing for social connection, and read more about ways we think the modern office will start to look different.
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