In today’s concrete jungle of coffee mugs & cubicles, businesses continually struggle with the prospect of keeping their employees engaged and excited about their day-to-day work. One of the most overlooked aspects of improving office productivity is the investment a company is making in their workplace environment. Would you rather walk into an office with a reception area devoid of plant life or be greeted every morning by a fresh floral display? The aesthetic qualities of plants are obvious to the naked eye but office plants contribute much more than natural beauty.
The majority of our lives are spent shut off from the inherent benefits Mother Nature affords humanity. According to the EPA, Americans spend an estimated 90% of their time indoors. Companies can combat the widespread nature displacement and even boost productivity by adding indoor plants to their office design. A study conducted by Psychologist Dr. Craig Knight of the University of Exeter found that “plants, in a well designed and personalized office environment can boost business effectiveness through improved staff productivity and creativity.”
Likewise, a study conducted by the Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture at Washington State University led by researcher Virginia Lohr investigated the effect plants have upon workers in windowless environments. The study found that participants were more productive when plants were added to the windowless space, completing computer tasks 12% quicker.
So how does your office harness the power of plants? We’ve compiled some tips you can use below!
Expand Your Horizons
Office workers often complain of being stuck in a box all day. Try to make walls less constraining by placing plants in corners throughout the office. Make use of windows. Adding some floor plants in containers near windows will help connect the outdoors with your interior design.
Go Au Naturel
When deciding which plant containers to use, opt for natural materials like bamboo or wood to remind inhabitants of the outdoors. It is our instinct to surround ourselves with more natural products. Use local foliage that is prevalent in your surrounding area to ease your employees’ daily transition from the outdoors into their workspace.
Mix It Up!
To replicate the beauty and allure of nature, try to use a variety of plant species in your space. Reinforce Nature’s randomness by avoiding filling corridors with the same type of plant and identical containers. Create groupings of plants at irregular intervals. Use plants with bold foliage and colors mixed with more subtle species.
For the vast majority of humankind’s time on Earth, we lived outdoors or in structures constructed of plants and wood. While in modern times, we congregate mainly in man-made structures the instinctive need for natural shelter remains. Why do so many people spend their free time going for walks in parks?
It is that innate need, Biophilia, for nature that drives us out of our homes seeking solace. Use indoor trees to surround your office occupants by foliage or create an indoor atrium full of lush greenery employees can visit at lunch or during breaks.
To get a better idea on how plants can aid your business, view this photo gallery.
Do you have any tips on how to create a richer office environment with plants? Share below in the comments.
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