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How Future Workspaces Will Improve Productivity and Creativity

There have always been experiments and improvements in every domain of human life and business is no exception. In the area of workspace, a lot of innovations and creative ideas have been tried, implemented, rejected and improved upon.

Businesswoman working

Over the past few years, we have seen office spaces evolve in several directions featuring some great thoughts and ideas to enhance productivity and creativity. While some of these innovations have grown in popularity and stuck with us, others have had a rather shorter life span, eventually disappearing altogether.

In order to increase productivity, it is important that every business gives its employees the space that they need to inspire creativity, feel empowered and do their jobs well. Here we discuss some interesting elements of future workspaces that may tremendously help increase productivity and creativity among the employees.

No one is an island

Innovative and futuristic workspaces must be aimed at promoting chance meetings, fostering collaboration, reducing stress and enhancing productivity. In the not so distant past businesses hotly pursued ideas centered on increasing productivity.

Employees working in a clean office space

While more focus is now given to sustainability and the effective use of technology, some companies forget that workspaces are meant for humans to work in and therefore must be able to meet their needs and interests. Hence the more recent focus has turned towards maximizing human potential, creativity and productivity.

Here productivity means creating ideas and solving challenges – something that happens more through collaboration than it does whilst sitting alone at the work desk confining oneself to a set of files and folders. The most recent developments in workspace design take this collaborative requirement into account.

Facilitate chance meetings

The advanced communication channels available today means employees can work from anywhere, sending emails, messaging each other and having face to face virtual meetings via a wide variety of technology. From a creative perspective, we can, therefore, assume that it is not an absolute necessity for the employees to be confined to their desks most of the time. Connecting with each other and brainstorming are essential to promoting creative ideas and solutions to crucial challenges.

The design of the office space must facilitate both scheduled and casual encounters so that there will be conversations that lead to solutions. Workspaces that foster this type of collaborative approach to business are gaining traction with spaces being developed in an open plan style with cozy nooks, lots of recreation space and office gardens. These offices use unconventional space that encourages movement which in turns helps to facilitate highly effective mini meetings and even break time chat.

Envato office

Envato HQ – photo credit: Envato / Flickr

Nooks near common areas

When people run into each other, some wonderful and fruitful conversations are triggered that often result in innovative solutions. This is precisely the reason why nooks or areas that allow for privacy should be created around common paths. For instance, when two people start a conversation at the coffee machine, they can just sit down quickly to hold a twenty-minute meeting. If they have to reserve a conference room for this purpose, then both time and the creativity that is often a result of spontaneous conversation is lost and no efficiency is obtained.

Experts advise that these nooks are positioned in social places such as areas traditionally used for printing, eating or coffee breaks.

Conference rooms in common areas

While those boring, solid walls can put people to sleep, glass walls in the middle of busy areas can help people stay awake and fresh. While it is not possible to control all distractions, it is always possible to get up and move. Though there may be problems with people being distracted when having a meeting in a conference room with floor to ceiling windows, the actual outcome is usually better focus due to the higher levels of natural light and visual reality that something is going on outside the room.

Agile workspaces

The recent trends in office space design aim to create a situation where the employees do not need to remain sitting in the same place for hours upon hours. Depending on the task they are engaged in, people should be allowed to work at a bench, move to quiet spaces to do some brainstorming, go to a social hub for connecting with coworkers or move to private spots to hold some productive conversations.

Google Office in Zurich

Google Zurich – photo credit: Andrewarchy / Flickr

Most employees these days feel highly comfortable with agile workspaces. They feel as if they are at home, enabled by the freedom of choice they have with regard to choosing where they wish to do a particular task. Startup space and business incubators always stress the expert idea that agile environments mean more power, more control, and more choice.

Takeaway

Trends are always volatile. They change in response to the needs of the times. While there is no hard and fast rule that you must set up your office space in a given fashion, understanding what can turn your venture into a more productive one is always helpful in implementing the changes that will let you reap wonderful results.

Workspace design has immensely benefited from studies by psychologists, entrepreneurs and business experts and the resultant spaces are positively impacting both companies and their employees. When choosing your company’s workspace, consider the innovations that have been made already and implement great ideas to see that you provide your employees with a great space to work in and thereby enhance both production and profits.

About author

Ivan Widjaya
Ivan Widjaya 2404 posts

Ivan Widjaya is the Owner/Editor of Noobpreneur.com, as well as several other blogs. He is a business blogger, web publisher and content marketer for SMEs.

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