Men are from Mars and women are from Venus. Men are the yin to a woman’s yang. Even though we are human and we have similar approaches to our work, the needs in our working environment can differ greatly. It isn’t any surprise to see this in the home. Comedian Dave Chappelle joked that ‘If a man could sleep in a cardboard box, he wouldn’t buy a house’ while stating that ‘women needed nice things to feel comfortable’. The two go hand in hand. Where men tend to focus more on functionality, women tend to tap into the emotional and creative needs in their environment. When it comes to our working environment, the need for us to display our own creative flair that helps with our overall productivity comes back to the right yin and yang balance between functionality and creativity. It is important that we design an office environment that demonstrates our creative flair and ignites our ingenuity for innovation, passion and productivity. Below are a few ideas on how to achieve this.
Inject fun into your office
The best work that people can produce is when the actual work doesn’t feel like…well…work! Successful businesses have recognized this as a trait to a business’s success. Employees would rather spend time in their homes, but we spend most of our time at work. At work, we want to enjoy ourselves as much as possible while being productive and adding value to the business with our skillsets. Tony Hsieh of billion dollar company Zappos stated, “Have fun. The game is a lot more enjoyable when you’re trying to do more than just make money.” If you don’t have fun with what you do, why would anyone else?” So as a business, you need to look into ways where you can inject genuine fun into your environment.
Provide desks that allow people to work in groups
People can work individually. More often than not, people enjoy working in groups. This can be encouraged by having desk bays that allow people to work in their stations, but are placed with other members of their team that will help them with their creativity and productivity.
Playing on furniture themes
Create an interior design theme in line with the company’s mission. Should your company decide to theme itself to seem more retro, then purchasing retro furniture to place around the office will be key.
Less is more!
Believe it or not, simplicity is key. Aim to create a minimalistic design that will allow you to focus and become more creative. This can be achieved with an open floor office plan and a design that encourages space to be creative. Buy only what is needed and keep it simple to create a more attractive workplace.
Enrich the environment with bright aesthetics
It seems simple, but the aesthetics of the environment will enhance or detract the moods and motives of the people in the working environment. The Business Review Weekly published an article ‘What if your office was designed by women, for women?’ in August 2014 where columnist Fiona Smith discussed the need for employee friendly work spaces and the need for a positive aesthetic friendly environment. Ideally, you will keep the office bright with natural light. Or provide an environment where the lighting design adds to the comfort of the working environment.
Create experiences, not clutter!
When you are developing your office space, develop your workspace that will enrich your experience! If what you have added to your office fails to enrich your working experience, it is likely to be clutter that will distract you. Get rid of it! For example, a picture of your dog or your family may add to your working drive in your working environment. Whereas a mini television on the corner of your desk may distract you.
Create an environment that inspires your working vision
For an office to inspire creativity, there needs to be an environment for imagination to create new visions. Hong Kong business magnate Li Ka Shing has been quoted saying “Vision is perhaps our greatest strength…it has kept us alive to the power and continuity of thought through the centuries, it makes us peer into the future and lends shape to the unknown.” Without vision, you can’t see to set goals or avoid unnecessary obstacles.” Ensure that your office environment allows people to ignite their creative flair by having the space and freedom to imagine and create new visions.
Getting the right balance of functionality and the aesthetics can be tricky. While it is somewhat an innate sense for women, they can enhance the working environment of the office with their ideas that the male counterparts may easily overlook. A creative environment allows for new products, services and directions to be developed that will further enhance the business’s value. Speak up ladies. Venus needs to keep Mars on track!