8 Tips for Designing a New Office

office designAn office space is a home away from home, where you spend the majority of your time creating, managing, and maintaining. In order to work at your greatest potential, you need an office which suits the needs of you and your business. It should inspire productivity and accurately represent you as a professional.

Designing an office that is both comfortable and efficient is a delicate balancing act, but with these eight tips, you’ll have a workspace that works for you.

1. Your Office Should be Well Organized

When designing an office, be sure to have several drawers, cabinets, and shelves to properly organize and store items. It’s said that a desk reflects the worker’s mind, and this also applies to the entirety of the office. If your workspace is cluttered and disorganized, it becomes difficult to complete your necessary tasks, and makes you feel burdened and frustrated. Additionally, should you receive visitors, the office will project a sense of unprofessionalism. Proper organization will improve your mood, your productivity, and your image.

2. Your Office Should be Properly Lit

Be sure that your office has ample lighting, as studies have proven that light has a profound effect on mood and productivity. If your office is dark or unevenly lit, it will inspire negative emotions making you feel tired, depressed, and generally unmotivated. This will not only cut into your output but the quality of your work. An office should inspire, so take advantage of all natural sunlight available. Should you not have access to windows, you can utilize artificial lighting that is soft and indirect, resembling natural light. This will create a welcoming workspace you’ll feel stimulated in.

3. Your Office Should Reflect Your Style of Business

When decorating your office, it’s vital to remember your workspace reflects you as a professional. When receiving clients, their first impression should be an accurate representation of your business and what you offer. For example, banks should inspire professionalism and efficiency, and are therefore painted with neutral colors and decorated conservatively. However, a photographer’s studio should exude creativity, and often is decorated with bright colors and unusual furniture. Be sure to decorate your office in a manner that echoes your business. In addition to clients, you will also receive the same sense of professionalism or creativity and feel empowered for work.

4. Your Office Should be Spacious

Keep in mind that your office should inspire positive moods while being efficient; creating a space which offers decent room to work inside of accomplishes both. If your office space is cramped and enclosed, you will feel pressured, and visiting clients will feel equally uncomfortable. If your office is physically small, or should you be sharing it with a co-worker, arrange your desk and other furniture so they offer as much room as possible, and include mirrors to add depth. With an adequate amount of space, your office will seem tidy and well-organized.

5. Your Office Should Have Personal Touches

An office should complement your mental outlook, making you feel capable and excited to work. Adding your own unique flare to a workspace will add a sense of ownership and belonging, which will inspire you to focus. This should be in moderation, so as not to overwhelm the professionalism of your office, but a few decorative pictures on the wall or a family photo on your desk is a quality balance. Additionally, clients will notice these small touches and feel more at ease.

6. Your Office Should Have Proper Seating

When furnishing your office, choosing appropriate seating is a minor but vital detail. Office work means you spend the majority of your time sitting, and should you have a chair which is uncomfortable or unsupportive of your spine, you can experience long-term effects on your health. A common complaint of office workers is chronic back pain that occasionally develops into permanent injury or discomfort. This will affect your ability to work, causing distraction or, worse, forcing you to take long breaks to relieve the pain and prevent work altogether. Choose proper chairs that support your spine and encourages good posture.

7. Your Office Should Have Appropriate and Reliable Tools

Efficiency and order are paramount when designing your office, so be sure to have tools which are necessary, updated, and reliable. This can include a well-functioning computer, a quality stapler, a capable phone, and other necessary tools. Ensuring your office is equipped with the most quality essentials is perhaps expensive and time-consuming, but will boost your production and exude professionalism. For example, having a high-quality computer will prevent time wasted combating slow processing speed or glitches. In addition, this will establish an image of capability and status to any visiting clients.

8. Your Office Should Suit Your Working Style

When creating an office space, you must ensure it’s properly arranged to suit your unique working requirements. For example, if you have difficulty concentrating and desire privacy, but share an office with a co-worker, angle your computer so you are the sole viewer. For long hours on a keyboard, try placing your desk in a way that allows the most comfortable slant for your wrists. This will create a sense of customization and comfort, increasing your productivity

When designing an office, it’s important that it is efficient, productive, and inspires positive creativity. With these tips in mind, you’ll have created a workspace which accomplishes all this at once.

Studies Show the Key to Improving Productivity: Give Workers Control Over Their Office Space

increase productivityThere is much debate over how to engage employees and increase productivity. Some companies opt for open space to increase collaboration, while others stick with cubicle designs to give employees a measure of privacy. Others turn to designers to create color schemes that stimulate the senses. There are endless opinions as to just what is the right approach. Three studies by the University of Exeter’s School of Psychology in the United Kingdom reached an interesting conclusion, increase productivity by giving employees more control.

More Control = More Motivation

Researchers surveyed 2,000 office workers and carried out two specific experiments, focusing on their attitudes toward their assignments and worker efficiency under varying circumstances. The surveys also ascertained the worker’s level of control over his or her work space. The results showed the more control a worker has over his or her work space design, the happier and more motivated they will be. They were physically more comfortable, had better relationships with their employers and were more optimistic about their jobs overall.

Empowered to Perform

Further research examined the productivity of workers in a lean work space versus an enriched environment. Lean was defined as bare and functional, with minimal decorations. Enriched work spaces are those with more decor, such as pictures and plants. The study found employees in an enriched environment performed 17 percent better. However, the results were even better when researchers compared employees empowered to design their own area versus those that work in areas designed by their managers. Empowered employees were 32 percent more productive.


Keeping a productive team engaged is a priority for any business. Researchers concluded, “All this could have a huge impact for firms of any size, yet employers rarely consider the psychological ramifications of the way they manage space. By paying more attention to employees’ needs they can boost well-being and productivity at minimal cost.” Simply involving employees in the process can potentially have huge benefits. Some offices may be too large to include everyone. However, managers can pick representatives from across departments and job level to provide input. Think of ways to let each employee individualize his or her work space. The experts at The Office Planning Group are ready to help with all your office furniture needs. Let our professionals help create an engaging and motivated atmosphere for your staff. Contact us to learn more.

Why Office Furniture Speaks Volumes About You and Your Work

old office furnitureStop for a moment and think about your office furniture

  1. Not the people who work there, but the actual office itself, and think about people who come to your office.  What do they think?  Will they see desks and chairs that have a timeless style, or will they see particle board desks that are warping because of too much direct exposure to the sunlight, or because water from a plant has been leaking for years, or just because of age and weight? It is easy to ignore something that changes slowly and you see every day.  Now is the time to really look at your office critically.

Just like a person’s appearance can tell the world a lot about that person, the appearance of an office makes an important first impression as well.  Warped or old furniture can send out a message that an office is set in its ways or worse lacks funds. Not a great first impression when trying to win over new business.

None of those things might be true, but first impressions are important.  Once again, stop for a moment and think about your office situation. Are desks made from oak, cherry, or mahogany?  These types of wood are classic and provide a timeless appearance that sends a message of class and style.

Another way to improve the look of an office and to make a good impression on visitors is the furniture they will sit on.  Consider the chairs in a lobby.  An office setting doesn’t want the lobby to look like the chairs were borrowed from the oil changing place down the road.  Find furniture that is soft, stain resistant, and comfortable.  Remember that if a large percentage of your clientele is elderly, you should avoid seats that make people sink too low and have to work too hard to stand up.

Contact us at the Office Planning Group to help you pick out the best furniture for your office.  From comfortable and attractive chairs, to timeless desks that will still look classy 20 years from now, we will help guide you toward the best furniture for your specific needs.  The Office Planning group has free space plan design consultation and we offer professional installation and maintenance. Let us help you choose the furniture that will best suit your needs and will make a positive impression on customers and clients.

Talk to one of our experts today. No matter where you are in Louisiana, we can help you find the perfect accommodations for your place of business.