For better or worse, these past few years have been a major period of transition and experimentation in workspace design unlike any other. In early 2015, Facebook created controversy by moving its employees into the largest open floor plan workspace in the world — a single, quarter-mile-long room surrounded by a sprawling green campus. The same year, Samsung made waves by opening its new U.S. headquarters, which includes “open garden floors” and 1.1 million-square feet of open floorspace. Apple topped them both by announcing its next headquarters will have a futuristic “flying saucer” design costing over $5 billion.
Each of these gigantic workspaces were designed to inspire creativity in the employees who work there. But what if you don’t have a few billion dollars to drop on a new experimental office?
Fortunately, using workspace design to foster creativity in your employees isn’t something you need a bottomless wallet for. Small touches, like lighting, new paint or even a pet, can make all the difference. We’ve summarized some tips from Inc. below to get you started:
- Lighten things up. Let’s face it, nothing screams “creativity void” like fluorescent lighting and drab gray walls. Consider replacing your lightbulbs with warmer or natural lighting and painting a few walls in fresh, timeless colors. If painting is impractical, think about adding some art pieces or a splash of colored furniture to break up the gray.
- Make it personal. Encourage your employees to decorate their workspace with personal touches. Photos, art pieces and other personal items can liven up an otherwise boring cubicle or office room. Even pets like Regan, here at Spaces, Inc., can bring a boost of creativity.’
- Share the space. You can save money and encourage a collaborative atmosphere by sharing table space instead of having one desk for each person. One expert recommended that 60 percent of desks can go, which also frees up the floor for other things.
- Go green. Adding plants and other natural materials around the office can do a lot to inspire employees. If your office can afford it, consider having a small indoor garden or nook. A company bonsai tree that employees work together to maintain can also bring on the creativity.