Office culture can make or break your business
The topic of office culture may seem abstract and esoteric, something for human resources experts to focus on at planning meetings. But the reality is that your corporate culture is at the heart of your business success. It makes a difference to the way your team collaborates and the way staff interact with customers. Office fit-out company, Evoke Projects, looks at why culture is important and how you can build a more positive office culture.
Why is corporate culture important?
Culture permeates the work environment, driving the beliefs and behaviours of people in the business. It influences people’s motivation, creativity and attitude to work. Check out these statistics:
- 58% of employees have left a job or would consider leaving one if they felt the culture was permeated by negative office politics.1
- 81% of employees would be willing to work longer hours if they felt their employer was empathetic.1
- Having a culture that attracts high-talent can lead to 33% higher revenue.1
Culture is inextricably tied to the total employee experience, and it’s no surprise that a positive employee experience will flow through to the quality of work.
How does your office design impact culture?
The main conduit of office culture is the interaction with others. Day to day conversations, meetings, emails-people soak up the cultural mood of these interactions. Believe it or not, the infrastructure behind most of these interactions is your office design and fit-out. Are people sitting at workstations all day? Do they have spaces for meaningful collaboration? Can they interact informally over a coffee? Are loud conversations in an open-plan office fit-out preventing quiet concentration?
The best office designs align with corporate brand qualities and company values. If the overall office fit-out emulates your brand objectives, staff will live and breathe the cultural vibe that you want to communicate to customers. If you offer high-tech services or products, make sure your staff have the latest technology to work with. If your company prides itself on innovation, introduce innovative office furniture or features.
What can you do to build a positive office culture?
- Consider some company perks that create a positive employee experience, for example, Friday afternoon shoulder massages at the desk.
- Unite the company behind a charitable aim; that’s both fun and community serving.
- Encourage health and well-being at work.
- Give praise and recognition for a job well done.
- Ask staff for feedback about the culture – look for ways to tap into the positives and counteract the negatives.
Office fit-out and refurbishment ideas to improve the office culture
- Design your office with your employees’ needs in mind. Think about their workflow and interactions with other teams.
- Encourage movement at workstations and around the office with sit-stand desks, separate print rooms and water stations. This will create collaboration opportunities and improve well-being. Laura Brophy and Andre Filip write about ELA Advertising, where creative work is displayed on tall boards so the team must stand up, go back and forth to the board, and, ultimately, collaborate.2
- Add fun features to your office design that align with your brand values. For example, Volcom employees in California can grab a communal skateboard and skate from office to office! Volcom also showcases its vibrant and modern surf and skate appeal with creative artwork in the office fit-out.2 You can add fun features to your office design through a minor office refurbishment.
- Many workplaces expect employees to be available outside the traditional 9-5 workday. This requires some give and take to prevent staff burn-out. An office fit-out that has well-designed breakout areas can help people feel “at home at work”. Encourage staff to take time out and recharge (not just the batteries on their iPhones!).
- Create activity based zones in the office design where people have a choice over where and how they work. The office fit-out should include open plan spaces, meeting hubs, quiet areas and private spaces. Breakout spaces will double up as work areas because people just can’t help collaborating over a relaxing cuppa!
Please call Evoke Projects on 1300 720 692 for office design, office refurbishment and office fit-out ideas to build a more positive corporate culture.