In the latest issue of Start Up Magazine you have had the chance to read a nice little article about the important issues you need to consider when you are creating a new office – whether as a start-up founder or a more established business – and the man behind all the insights and advices is our very own Søren Kræn. As we know many of you might not come across the magazine, we just want to share the article with you here, so that you will have the chance to read it. So here we go: Office design for start-up founders Soren Kraen, CEO at Xworks Interiors LLC, reveals the important issues to consider when you are creating a new office Whether you are designing a completely new office or redoing an old, there are several things you need to consider before starting. Because your choices matter – as they will affect the office environment more than you think. Several studies have shown that how the office is designed not only impact the overall productivity of your employees, but also their overall happiness at work. Of course, we cannot offer you a single formula for creating the perfect office, as that depends completely on your needs, but we can guide you through some of the things that you need to take into careful consideration. First of all, IT have changed the way we design offices now a days. With laptops, WIFI and mobiles being an integrated part of our lives, we no longer require the same static workplace, nor the same amount of desk space, as we once did. Flexible work spaces makes the modern office This means that many companies today are embracing a more open layout with smaller desks for the individual employee, and bigger open areas for team-meetings and brainstorming-sessions. However, most companies still keep some smaller closed meeting rooms for private meetings, client meeting and for when someone needs a quiet place. Because it is important to remember that with an open office, there will be more sounds around you than if you sit in a smaller closed office. “Break Out” areas The latest trend within the Interior Office Design Industry is “Break Out” areas. Areas in the office where the furniture have a more homely feel and often is the area designed to stimulate creativity. A place where the employees can go to work, have workshops, brainstorming-sessions or just take a quick break. Stand up meeting tables Another micro-trend are those high sleek meeting tables that force you to stand up during meetings. It is healthy for you to stand more and studies have shown that standing up during e.g. shorter team-meeting can reduce the meeting time by 34%! And that is quite a lot. However, do have a normal meeting table set-up too, as it will be tough to stand up doing hour-long meetings. Ergonomics is the new ‘black’ In Europe ergonomics have been a big deal for many years, but now it is also becoming important here in the UAE. And that is good, as the use of ergonomically correct office furniture can have a huge impact on the employees’ health and productiveness. Ergonomics is about fitting the workspace to the individual employee to give the employee the optimal work conditions. We see that the benefits of ergonomic office furniture greatly outweigh the expense of choosing ergonomic furniture, such as electric height-adjustable desks and chairs. Height-adjustable desks Did you know that sitting for prolonged periods of time every day can decrease the efficiency of the fat burning enzymes in your body, decrease your blood circulation and increase the chance of mental fatigue? And that all this can lead to a lower concentration and productivity, which means you perform poorer at work? For many this comes as a surprise. However, by using a modern, ergonomic height-adjustable desk you can both sit and stand comfortably while you work. You get a table that fits you perfectly in the height and it also gives you more energy and decreases your chances of developing health problems – if you remember to stand up every day! Adjustable chairs Adjustable office chairs are important if you wish to create the optimal ergonomic workspace for your employees, as adjustable chairs make it possible to adjust the features of the chair until the chair feels comfortable to sit in for the individual. By adding adjustable and ergonomic correct furniture you decrease the risk of health problems, such as back issues and blood circulation problems for the employees and in the same time you create the optimal surroundings for a productive workforce. Indoor nature for the long run Another great trend, we really like is the use of nature indoor. We know that plants naturally filter the air for any harmful chemicals and other toxins, they boost humidity levels which decrease cough-inducing dry air. Indoor plants also offer a soothing and beautiful escape; the mere presence of plants recreates memories of past vacations and tropical getaways. Indoor plants can also reflect and absorb indoor office noises and create a calmer atmosphere. Greenery boosts the wellness in the office and we especially love the beautiful green plant walls that not only add to the design of the office, but also offers all the health benefits. Natural light boosts productivity As to nature, studies have also shown that natural light has a profound impact on employees’ productivity. However, natural light does not only impact how many emails your employees can send a day, light also influences your employees’ sleep, energy levels, quality of life and even things like mood and behavior. So make sure to factor in natural light when designing all aspects of the office. A good tip is to keep workspaces close to the windows, so that the employees will get as much natural light as possible. Think about the environment Our final advice is to think about the environment in every aspect of your office design. Choose brands that care about the environment and if you have the possibility choose environmentally friendly options of furniture, carpets, ceilings and so on. It will do good. For us all. -------- You can also read the article directly in the magazine if you click here – you find us on page 34-35!
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