I have spent a good portion of my career focusing on how to make office spaces functional, while amplifying a company’s brand. Through the process, we always view them as an extension of our brand, and consider how to connect employees to the company values in way that inspires them every day.
Every brand is different. Every space is different. It’s critical to reflect the unique ethos of the business in designing the space. Here’s a few tips I’ve picked up along the way to do exactly that:
1.) Work within the existing architecture of the space: Does the space have industrial concrete floors? Does the space have exposed brick? Does the space have a large picture window? Challenge yourself to identify and incorporate any existing architectural elements to help give the space character.
2.) Add in new architectural elements: If you are in a space already that you need to update or make changes to, what are the architectural elements you can add to the space for a low cost? Can you pull up the carpet to expose wood floors or concrete? Can you add wood beams or a decorative pattern material to the ceiling?
3.) Furniture: You and your employees will be spending a lot of time in the space, and it is important the furniture is comfortable and fits the needs of the employees working there. Spending a little bit more on a chair that has been industry-tested, will hold-up and is ergonomically correct is important. My favorite office furniture is sold by some of my favorite people at Dupler Office. This local Columbus-based showroom has a variety of office furniture solutions for desks, chairs, break-out areas, collaboration stations, privacy solutions, etc. My favorite traditional office chair would be Eames chair by Herman Miller. This chair not only looks beautiful, but it is functional and super comfortable.
Another piece of office furniture that I absolutely love is the Altitude table by Allsteel. This height adjustable table not only looks sleek and stylish but offers the flexibility to be a standing or sitting desk in a hit of a button.
4.) Lighting: Don’t underestimate the important of natural light in a space. Everyone craves the Vitamin D that natural light offers. Make windows a focal point in your space by painting the window frames in a bold color or by adding a beautiful window treatment that provides beauty and function.
If your space isn’t fortunate enough to have natural light, add in some beautiful overhead lighting. Adding in fixtures that look more residential than commercial will add a lot of visual interest in the space. Lighting can add a lot of visual interest in the space. Sprinkle in a mix of floor lamps, task lamps on the desks, pendant or chandelier lights over larger harvest tables or gathering spaces. Lighting will really soften the space. One of my favorites is this Vix LED light from Lumens.
5.) Bring the outdoors in: Similar to my post about refreshing your home space, even in an office setting it is important to bring in elements from the outdoors. Research has shown that adding live plants to a space can help employees lower stress levels. This can be done in simple ways like having some live plants in pots around the office. I love adding succulents into my spaces since they take very little maintain. Another larger way to bring the outdoors in is by creating a feature wall that incorporates live materials to the space. I have been obsessed with the work that Plantropy is doing locally in Columbus. They have installed many of these live green walls into spaces throughout office, retail and business spaces. One bonus of a live green wall is that it can be designed in a way that reflects your brand or designed to be specific for your logo.
6.) Brand the space: Your office space is one of the most visible extensions of your brand. Guests and visitors should connect with the brand while in your space and truly understand what your company stands for. Strong branding can also boost employee engagement and inspiration to do their best work. Be proud of your space and the brand behind your company.