Absence due to sickness is probably one of the main concerns of a business. If a company is a man down, then it can be very detrimental, not to mention stressful and costly. It’s worth noting that sickness isn’t always due to a stomach bug or a headache, and there can be more emotional factors associated with absence, such as stress and depression. There can be many causes for such conditions, but some may be surprised that the work environment can be one of the main causes.
In the past, many businesses have felt it necessary to lay out a series of ground rules to ensure productivity is the best it can be, often putting restrictions in places so the employee doesn’t have much choice other than getting back to the grind. Of course, the sole purpose of a business is to make money, but cracking the whip too hard can have an adverse reaction, so it can be beneficial to change the way we think about how office design is implemented and how it affects the health of employees.
Business and Pleasure Is the Way Forward
It would be easy to assume that placing fun little games such as Subbuteo in the office, as well as allowing access to television is sending out the wrong message, but quite the opposite is true. Having to focus an on a particular bottom line for most of the day can take its toll on anyone, and can really affect the mindset of individuals if they aren’t able to grab a respite.
Of course, there shouldn’t be a situation where an employee is slipping off for several hours, but giving workers a choice means that the business is recognising them as an adult, and therefore expects them to make an adult decision.
As well as giving employees a much-needed break, it makes for a more inviting workplace overall. In fact, there will be instances where members of staff will start arriving much earlier, due to the welcoming environment of the office.
Considering Co-Working Environments
Regardless of whether you’re a business promoting metal garages for sale or a freelancer, there will come a time when you will look to work on a project alongside others. While some may deem it acceptable to squeeze into a tight office space, the truth is that there is more to be gained from a co-working space.
Regardless of the setup, co-working allows like-minded individuals to share their ideas and collaborate on projects together. It also provides the potential for some powerful networking. It can also encourage those in attendance to really flesh out their ideas, as well as allow for some new perspectives.
A co-working environment really helps employees and freelancers gain more confidence in what they have to offer, and ensures loneliness is kept at bay, which can be one of the biggest obstacles when it comes to productivity.
Reducing the Carbon Footprint
Office space doesn’t just have to be about improving the health and mindset of today’s employee, but also the environment as a whole. Becoming eco-friendly has become important for many businesses and individuals, and when you look at the bigger picture, it can only be healthier for us moving forward.
Recent developments by companies have included a “paperless” system. This can be anything from sending customers invoices via email, to changing the way we light our office to more energy-saving lightbulbs.
As well as laying the foundations for a greener environment, the changes made are also likely to offer the business a series of savings, so it’s certainly something worth considering.
Changing the Way We Work
It may surprise you to know that strains and associated injuries account for 38 percent of workplace accidents, and some of the injuries could be attributed to the way people have worked in the past.
The human body isn’t really designed to sit for long periods of time, nor was it designed to be slouched over a desk. While the concept of sitting at a desk shouldn’t be demonised, this doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t look at more evolved ways of working.
Standing desks are an ideal reference point in how the modern office is adopting new ways of thinking and passing the benefits onto the employee. Gone are the rigid and stressed workers of yesterday, and introduced are the more influenced and confident employee of today.
There is no template that can be applied to any business, it really is a case of engaging with employees and catering for different personalities. Of course, this could be a lengthy process in some instances, but the time invested will go to yield more benefits later.
OF course, there are more old-school routines that still hold a place within the work environment. Although there is a view to making the workplace a much happier one, members of staff still need to know where they stand when it comes to expectations. However, it’s important that the same rules and regulations are in place regardless of who is involved.
For example, if a senior manager was to miss a deadline, but there was no repercussion, this could cause ill feeling within the office. There’s really no place for favouritism or bullying in the workplace, as it just hinders productivity in the end.
Ensuring a employee is healthy is about much more than ensuring they are able to carry out the role physically, it’s about ensuring that they are in the right mindset. People can prefer different ways of working, but if you’re able to strike a balance and give employees some sway in the decision-making, you should find that you have a much healthier workplace moving forward.