An idea that was pioneered in the nineties by corporate giants Google and Pixar, it is something that many many businesses, particularly tech companies it seems, have adopted at the workplace.
This idea is no stranger to Dublin either, with tech giants Facebook, Google and the relative new-comer to the capital, Qualtrics (which even has a full bar at the office!), leading the field in office design and employee satisfaction (the two seem to go hand-in hand!).
If your company doesn’t have the budget to hire a top class architect, or put a slide in the cafeteria, not to worry – keep it simple! However big or small your company, there should always be room for fun in the office! Studies have shown that stress and pressure do not increase productivity, a happy workforce is one that is looked after by employers, wellbeing being at the heart of this idea. If your employees are going to be working long hours – make them as bearable as possible! And this doesn’t have to mean blowing the budget on outrageous office design, we have put together some simple tips for encouraging a fun office environment for your business.
It’s not just about sticking a table tennis table in the corner of the office and Bob’s your uncle. An ethos of fun and relaxation should be fostered throughout the office in order to bring an atmosphere of good spirits and comradeship. Employees are likely to spend more time at the office, if it can be associated with fun and social life, and the dread of entering the office can be lifted.
Mindless distractions increase productivity. A happier workforce is more likely to work harder, to be motivated and increase the overall performance of your business – so if you’re a business-owner, promoting fun in your office is a no-brainer.
The office should be homely and cozy – a “home away from home”. With research renouncing the previous notions of formality and “separateness” from the home, it’s time to make way for furry carpets and sofas!
It is important for employees to be able to step away from the desk and clear their heads for 20 to 30 minutes with a game of pool or Xbox. Designate a play room. Clear out old files and paperwork, put them in a self storage unit for example, and use the extra space to install a games console and some arcade tables, a pool table or a table tennis table. This type of venture is not something that needs to break the bank. Almost all offices have rooms with redundant files and paperwork, that could certainly be moved off site in order to make better use of the space. A self storage unit is an ideal option in a situation like this, and files can be accessed whenever they may be needed by simply dropping by the unit.
Replace coffee and stale donuts with fruit and healthy snacks to promote an overall atmosphere of health and wellbeing.
Offer employees the opportunity to work at home. This may be the place your employee is most comfortable and productive. Sometimes moving from the office to a different environment can increase employee productivity also. Flexibility ensures your employees do not feel “chained to their desks” and encourages wellbeing.
Parties are essential to allow people to unwind and let the hair down. It also gives people targets and times to look forward to, fosters employee communication and bonding and for sure elevates the spirits of the work team. Celebrate small wins – targets met and clients gained should not go unnoticed or without praise. This is known as the “progress principle”.
Get a dog! As bizarre as this may sound, it has been shown that having a canine in the office greatly increases productivity and also communication and collaboration between employees!
Encourage hobbies at work. Find out what your employees are interested in and aim to incorporate these into their work life. For example art, reading, yoga and many other interests can be factored into break times in the office.
Open plan seating fosters the idea of “coworking”, creating a setting where colleagues can throw ideas at each other and work together more openly. This approach has been adopted by many start-ups where creativity and communication are important for the growth of the business. All it requires is rearranging seating and desks and better use of your office space.
For employees, happiness in the workplace is imperative, improving overall quality of life. Considering that you will be spending the majority of your time there, choosing a workplace that promotes a fun and healthy environment is a good idea.
If your office is more “traditional” we have some ideas to liven up your desk space and make it more fun!
– A plant at your desk area increases oxygen flow and bridges the gap between indoors and outdoors – a refreshing addition to your workspace.
– Pictures of family and pets: Showing photos of your children or pets to co-workers can help your team establish friendships, creating a happier and more loyal workforce. If that wasn’t enough, studies also show that looking at cute animal pictures at work can actually make you more productive!
-As per a recent article in the Irish Independent, the nifty new addition to the office desk is a hammock! Providing a space-efficient place to nap and chill at work, without being disturbed by co-workers – we at Storage World love this great use of space! Click here to read more about the hammock.