Ambience is crucial for productivity, what are the reasons?

Ambience is crucial for productivity, what are the reasons?

One day after a long time working from home, I entered to our brand new office and realised that my working life herewill be different from my home-office where I’m alone with my Zoomy Teams, two laptops and printer.

It’s almost instantly become evident that the office is super nice socialisation instrument where I can meet people in person and talk about things, but my productivity and free time dramatically impacted by the change. It wasn’t very clear that myinteractions with people are meaningful and make things happen or they all more like a kind of a long small talk.

You know, when people quietly worked in offices, the question of the relationship between productivity and environment existed in some kind of parallel universe.

Managers dealt with it — they communicated with designers, created an openspace, bought furniture, filled the space with details, applied aroma and neuromarketing. Having worked during quarantine from home, everyone thought about the importance of the right environment. In a pandemic, the house gave people a sense of security and … confusion.

First, the remote happened suddenly. Everything that happens suddenly evokes polar emotions: either you really like it or you don’t really like it. Secondly, a new experience. Everything new requires adaptation, support, maintenance. Thirdly, something else, everyone has their own. Everyone worked at home on the couch, on the balcony, in the kitchen and got new sensations in full and … wanted to return to the office, well, or didn’t.

Where exactly to return? Some offices today look like after the apocalypse — dividing tapes, office acoustic partitions — anew trend, recreation areas have become isolation zones … Previously a concern was on how to unite people, now it is how to separate for security reasons. Open space office the system that stimulates team spirit has become not so open. The classic closed office-corridor system remained intact. By the way, the latter is very conducive to productivity. True, and costs considerable. Closed small spaces are especially important to fill with quality furnishings with a claim to success. Otherwise, the only desire will be to leave the premises as soon as possible.

But open spaces are often filled with ultra-modern furniture, the main thing here is that everything looks innovative, not respectable. Here everything is in plain sight, modern forms of management "enter" well, a zone of increased creativity and productivity.

In general, for financiers — a classic, for creatives — design solutions. And the smell of coffee periodically walking around the office, bright walls, flowers and vertical gardens — all for a reason, all in the name of productivity. In general, the office is primarily socialization. And then the situation. With regard to the latter, I am sure that changes are coming in office design. Well, how long will we be separated from each other by a piece of plastic?! Soon they will come up with something futuristic and make it a trend.

Home Sweet Home

Working from home is good, but in the end it’s not cheaper or better. Just different. You save time on home — office trips, but blur the line between personal and business life. A pretty orange kitchen is equally inspiring for creativity and for another snack. An insufficiently ergonomic workplace is good for the soul, but bad for the back, productivity and, as a result, for the wallet. Inspirational factors in everyday life, like cats and children, are also distractions when you need to concentrate on a work task.

As a result, some people repaint warm beige walls in a productive blue. It is understandable: few people planned to work at home, only to relax. Others spread lemon slices, sage and rosemary sprigs around the apartment and practice aroma marketing. Still others invest resources in equipping a full-fledged work area.

As practice shows, those who have a personal office in the office also have it at home. I mean leaders. They are a little easier in this regard.

In general, I am convinced that the home office cannot be a full-fledged replacement for the traditional one. Although I don’t see the point in going to the office on a five-day week either. We need a balance. It is not yet completely clear what we will eventually come to, but it is very interesting what will happen next! In the meantime, all means are good for productivity — a personal motivation system, and invigorating aromas, and cosmic blue walls.

Another important though here is about open-space itself. From one hand it is great pleasure to feel all the colleagues around you, communication becomes very easy and fast, but at the same time very distractive — people coming to your desk asking questions and seeking for instant answers. Another example is when people start talking around you — having a chat or a call or a conference… Many of us put headphones on and listen to the music, but I read a few articles that is is unproductive too. Only this is enough for me to start get ridding off complete open-spaces and make hybrid working a standard.
Leadership Culture