4 Strategies to Create a Better Work Environment

A good work environment can be the driving force behind a successful company. This article looks at four ways you can avoid a bad work environment and promote a healthy, productive one.

1. Lighting Matters

A dark, dreary office can make people feel tired, strain their eyes, and affect their attitudes. One problem is lack of natural light: According to Psychology Today (citing research from Northwestern University), workers with less natural light had “poorer outcomes in measures of overall sleep quality” and “daytime dysfunction.” Therefore, when selecting or modifying an office space, go for options that provide natural light through windows. If that isn’t possible, blue-enriched lightbulbs can be useful for keeping people focused in brainstorming rooms. Warmer tones in break rooms can relax workers, and neutral tones can strike a middle ground in conference rooms.

2. Communicate

It’s hard for employees to stay motivated if they don’t know what’s going on within their company. Management should be transparent about decisions and expectations for employees. Communication is a two-way street, though: If lower-level employees have concerns about their managers, higher leadership, or the company’s decisions, they should have a way to be heard and listened to.

3. Get Comfortable

Ill-fitting furniture, cramped desks, and cluttered offices are all ingredients in the recipe for a bad work environment. Conversely, giving your employees flexibility–like choosing a sitting or standing desk–can make them feel more welcome and productive. Also consider giving each employee a small budget they can use to customize their workspace.

4. Hire and Maintain a Great Team

A work environment is only as good as the people who inhabit it, and that’s why it’s so important to focus on building a great team. Hire professionals who work well with others. On the flip side, keep in mind that just one bad team member can drag morale down for everyone singlehandedly. Don’t be afraid to let such people go.

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