The workspace has seen a bit of a shift as a result of the pandemic. From working from home to hybrid work environments, the future is now. The changes in the work environment have raised particular questions such as what is the ideal workspace.
One issue with finding the ideal workspace is that it needs to suit the majority of team members. No two team members are the same so it is impossible to satisfy everyone. Some prefer working from home, others have a strong desire to be in the office but most like to be given the flexibility to do both. Then there are certain elements that are needed such as comfort, safety and so forth.
So this raises the question of what is an ideal workspace. What does it need to include, how does it work for remote workspaces and the list goes on and on. This is where we help you explore and understand each aspect of what is needed to make that particular environment ideal.
Characteristics Of An Ideal In-Person Work Environment
While it is safe to say everyone will have their own needs and wants, the ideal workspace can be achieved if the basics are met. That is, the clean and comfortable work environment and employees feel safe, increasing employee happiness and productivity.
You have probably seen photos of startups and their cool and trendy workspace that consists of bean bags, pool tables, ping pong tables and other aesthetically pleasing decorations. These designs will not suit everyone of course but it is there as a reason to help improve employee productivity, comfort and wellbeing.
Designs That Are Easy On The Eyes
Depending on the type of job, it is safe to assume that most professions require you to spend hours behind the screen. This can be extremely exhausting and can take a toll on your eyes. It is therefore important to take occasional breaks and let your eyes recharge.
The ideal workspace would include having an Instagram-worthy view surrounding your office environment. If you have windows then that is great as you can occasionally glare at what is happening in the outside world giving your eyes the rest they well deserve. However, not everyone has that but that should not stop you from being creative.
A big recommendation is that if you cannot bring yourself to nature, bring nature to you! Having plants or some greenery in the office is known to help replenish focus and increase productivity. They also improve indoor air quality and remove any harmful pollutants. Combine this with an open floor plan and you have essentially created a work environment where employees will feel calm, focused and productive.
Designing For Productivity And Health
You have probably seen some cool startup offices and their super trendy designs that make you want to work there. While it of course makes the office look so much cooler than any other office, there is a purpose behind it. The designs are there to increase productivity but also inspire creativity.
From the lighting to the use of inspirational quotes or creative artwork on the wall, these elements are used to create healthier workplaces. A healthy workplace should tick the following boxes: having comfortable, ergonomic furniture in the office, cubicles as well as shared or flex spaces.
Characteristics Of An Ideal Remote Work Environment
As a result of the pandemic, working remotely became a norm for society in order to reduce the spread of Covid-19. While some favored the new work environment, not everyone was a fan of it and this was largely due to not finding the ideal remote work environment or missing the characteristics of an in-person workplace.
What you need to create an ideal workplace remote edition is to essentially have all the tools that will allow you to excel at your job. This sounds like it is the responsibility of the employer and that is largely true. To create the remote ideal workplace, you need to stay connected with your colleagues. You should have access to the company materials, and tools and be able to collaborate and do your tasks seamlessly regardless of where you are situated.
Open Collaboration On Team Needs
So we have figured out that the ideal remote workplace is that management should provide the right tools for each employee to perform their tasks effectively. However, figuring out what tools everyone needs should be a team effort.
To figure out what each employee needs, management should collect information on each employee’s preferred tools and working styles. Based on this feedback, they are then able to implement what tools each employee needs to succeed in their role. The ideal remote work environment is created as a result of an ongoing team effort based on open collaboration and feedback between the team members and management.
If management wants to get the most out of their employees, they need to listen when team members communicate their needs. The team knows what they need to be successful in their roles.
As mentioned, not everyone is a fan of working from home and some will miss the office environment and their colleagues. It is very possible that some colleagues feel more comfortable and more productive in an office-style environment, something they are unable to create at home. Allowing a stipend for colleagues to go to a co-working space or workspace outside of their home could do wonders for them too.
Open lines of communication at all times are important whilst working remotely. There is not enough emphasis on the importance of listening to employee feedback and what is best for them.
One of the biggest reasons why some employees might not enjoy remote working is the feeling of isolation. While calling someone through the likes of Skype, Zoom, or other platforms can help reduce the feeling of isolation, nothing really beats in-person communication.
Yet, the feeling of isolation can be minimized through the use of remote social events. This is a great initiative that employers need when creating a remote workspace. Employers can also allow coexisting communication via email or chat platforms like Slack. Essentially the ideal workspace for remote workers is one where employees are not required to answer emails straight away or stay all day on chat platforms but one that allows for uninterrupted focus time.
How Company Values And Culture Contribute To An Ideal Work Environment
Company values and culture can play an essential role in defining what is the ideal workspace. What could make one person great to work for other than the salary or the perks is the positive company culture created as a result of the people but more importantly of the values. While the effect of company culture is easier felt in person, it should also be transferable whilst working remotely as the company values, in particular, should not change.
How To Incorporate Mission Statement
The foundation of everything as well as the work environment is the result of the mission statement and values created by the company. The issue is that many companies have these values but do not actually practice them. If more companies actually practice what they preach, they can make changes for the better in creating that ideal workspace.
Professionalism In The Ideal Workspace
One of the biggest factors why some employees choose to leave their job is the result of lack of development. Employers can avoid this by allowing each employee access to professional development opportunities that will help them reach the next step in their professional careers. Offering opportunities for growth is a powerful motivator for many employees and can enhance a more positive company culture.
There are still other essential components that need to be met to create the ideal workspace. These are as follows:
Relaxed And Productive Atmosphere
An ideal workspace is one that allows employees to feel safe, relaxed and comfortable. It is one that will help boost productivity.
Commitment To Excellence
Employees are more likely to give it their all if they know that the company is committed to excellence. The company striving for nothing less than the best will encourage its employees to do the same, it will inspire them to do their best work essentially, which helps create an ideal workspace.
Open And Honest Communication
What makes a workspace an ideal one is if it is safe to be open and honest in communication. Not being afraid to challenge ideas or express your opinion without having the fear of being fired is one that creates an ideal workspace.
Cooperation, Support, And Empowerment
The ideal workspace must consist of cooperation, support and empowerment. Being able to cooperate not just between employees but as well as management can help create the ideal workspace. Management is expected to be supportive of their team members and help them feel empowered.
Compassion, Respect, And Understanding
Showing compassion, respect and understanding could be the key differentiator between someone saying they like their job versus someone that loves their job. An employer who shows compassion, respect and understanding to an employee and their team members will make them feel valued and heard.
The best workplaces are the ones that offer you flexibility. Especially nowadays, hybrid workplaces are the norm so allowing employees to work both at home and at the office can help create a positive workplace. An employee should not feel forced to go to work or work from home rather have the option to do what suits them and what works best for them.
A compliment never goes wasted and if anything it can make someone’s day. Employers are highly encouraged to use positive reinforcement. Praise someone if they are doing a good job or achieved something. This shows that you care firstly but it will also make the employee feel like the work they do matters and is appreciated.
Emphasis On Health, Family, And Environment
Nowadays with the hybrid work environment, most people have the option to choose whether to work from home or from the office. Those who work at home have the chance to spend more time with their family. Others potentially choose to work outside where they are in contact with nature. There is an emphasis on what helps you live your best and healthiest life whether that is by being with your family or being surrounded by the environment.
This one is not exactly rocket science, employees are motivated by money. Simply boosting someone’s salary can lead to higher job satisfaction and loyalty. Companies should not be afraid to explore the idea of bonuses as well as other benefits such as vacation time and health insurance. All of this can help create an ideal workspace.
Lastly, good leadership can make all the difference in the world. A good leader is one that inspires people and also takes care of them. It can sometimes be the reason why employees choose to stay at their certain position because there is good leadership. What makes a good leader is also one that lives and breathes the company values and helps others reach their full potential.
Creating the ideal workspace means combining different elements. From the physical design for in-person workplaces to the tools and communication for remote workspaces. Combine that with great company values and culture and team relationships and you will find yourself working in an ideal workspace.
To help you witness the ideal workspace, start to apply for an internship today. AIP provides internship placements across the world in more than 20 different industries. Apply on our website today to help find your ideal workspace!