You and your workmates spend most of the day inside your office building that you can practically consider it as your second home. As such, you must create a positive working environment for yourself and your co-workers to maintain office productivity and lessen stress and illnesses. But could you create a warm and cozy atmosphere in a place of work? Could you make sure that your office is a clean and safe place for you and your workmates?
A healthy workplace is ideal to increase productivity in the workplace. Happy and healthy employees are motivated employees who come to work on time, are efficient in their tasks, and find purpose and meaning in what they do.
What Makes A Healthy Office Environment?
A healthy office environment requires four aspects: a healthy workplace culture, occupational health and safety, health and lifestyle practice, and a supportive workplace environment.
All of these have to be taken into account when it comes to the well-being of your employees. Your employees are what keeps your business up and running, so it becomes your duty to look out for their welfare.
One of the ways you can do to bring life into your workplace is by improving the physical environment surrounding your workplace. No one wants to work in a place where the walls are drab and dreary. It will feel reminiscent of being in a prison, and your employees are trapped within its four walls.
Bring A Little Green Into The Scene
During the start of the quarantine, people have gotten in on the trend of collecting indoor plants. The addition of these houseplants into the home made all the difference in improving your mood. In a study by Dr Craig Knight of the Exeter University, he found out that there was a correlation between the office environment and office productivity. In order to prove his point, Knight had staff at three companies work in bare and stripped down offices, while performing challenging tasks. It was only when the subjects were moved to a similar setting, with the addition of houseplants that they reported a 20 percent increase in productivity.
The addition into your workplace will not only improve office productivity and the aesthetics of your office, it can improve the air quality as well.
Indoor Air Quality and Your Office
Communications Workers of America stated in an article that more than 500,000 workers all across the United States are exposed to various occupational safety and health hazards daily. One of the most common health and safety hazards is indoor air pollution.
How does indoor air pollution happen? It exists when there is only a limited amount of air that is circulating throughout the office environment. This means that you are breathing in recycled and air-conditioned air as you are sitting there in your cubicle. In addition to that, you are also exposed to various toxic chemicals.
These chemicals can be found in everyday office equipment, and you might not even be aware of it. For instance, there are traces of carbon monoxide that are found in cigarette smoke, as well as outside traffic, there is also solvent that can be found in common household cleaners, glues, and the office ventilation system itself.
Indoor Air Pollution and Its Effects on Health
We are exposed to pollution on an everyday basis and these can take its toll on our health. The physical symptoms would usually include headaches, eye discomfort, as well as upper respiratory congestion. In addition to this, the health symptoms may bring about strains on your psychological health, such as frustration, anxiety and irritability. Fortunately, you can do what you can to improve your office environment and minimize indoor air pollution.
The addition of plants, for one thing has been known to be the most viable way to reduce these harmful chemicals in your office environment. There are many low maintenance plants out there that you can introduce into your office environment. They add to your place’s aesthetics and also improve people’s mood. Rubber plants and Dracaena fragrans are among the popular indoor plant choices of many offices.
Many workplaces have caught on the indoor office plant craze. Some have even adopted a vertical landscape design to amp up the greenery vibe in their office space. A healthy and happy working environment is what many employees aspire to have. Remember that happiness in the workplace is a two-way street, and if you keep your employees happy and healthy, you will certainly see and feel its benefits.