Let’s face facts: the average professional employee spends well over 50% of their waking hours at work. Creating an attractive office environment that is conducive to productivity is one of the best ways to keep employees happy and get the most ‘bang-for-the-buck’ out of those hours. No wonder these 5 commercial interior design rules are considered MUSTs!
Inspiration and Company colors
What came first…the business chicken or the logo egg?
Company products or services, intended corporate culture, logo colors, available space per employee. In truth, these 4 elements are so tightly interwoven it’s hard to say which is more important when we begin the creative process.
All that said, if design has been inbedded in a company from day one, the company name, logo, font, and colors all define ‘who they are’ to an outsider in the blink of a eye.
Think about it: Blues–likely a business professional company, Red colors–more high energy/ cutting edge, Orange/ Yellow—fun and youthful, Greens–young and nature focused. Flowing fonts–casual/ relaxed/ creative, All CAPS–bold/ high impact. Etc, etc, etc…
These help establish a direction, but ownership/ management (and available space per employee) tells us what the ‘personality’ and priorities of their company are and how they want the work environment to feel for employees.
Can you hear me now? Or now?
Trends in commercial design include a move toward open office layouts, flex furniture, and flex spaces (see the next segment below for flex spaces). The goal: to increase communication between team members and, therefore, increase productivity. As a result, walls have been knocked down all over corporate America. Large open spaces have created the need for small quiet spaces–for communication at an employee-to-employee level, and professional employee-to-customer contact. These new corporate additions are mini-conference rooms (huddle rooms, like the red and gray room below) or really really mini-desks (a huddle phone booth like the blue example below).
Another change in office functionality is the sit/ stand desk, like those pictured above (check out the cool drop down acoustic elements attached to those desk too!). This type of desking has been found to boost productivity, improve employee attitude, increase thinking abilities, and even increase engagement with coworkers and customers. They can also help increase memory capacity.
Emotions and Psychographics
Happy wife, happy life! Oh, not that… Happy worker bee, happy company!
An owner’s approach to motivating and managing their employees certainly is a huge contributor to the success of a company. Interior design can also be used to increase employee happiness, productivity, and retention. It goes way deeper than a great color scheme though!
More and more companies install statement walls. They can either be used to drive home why the company they work at is fantastic (WOW we have a great product or service!) or give a call out to key founders / great employees. Both versions help motivate and inspire.
Why is flex space becoming more and more prevalent in America and what exactly is that? We all know now that children learn best in different ways; well the same is true in adults–some are more productive sitting quietly at a desk and others are going to accomplish more while listening to their favorite music in a comfy chair or sitting in the company cafe. Thus the birth of Flex Spaces and the decrease of assigned desks. Fewer desks needed, more people working from home (with great technology), and real estate overhead costs go down…OH, and employees are generally happier!
It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s an acoustic cloud…. (what the heck is that?).
There are so many products available to create highly functional corporate spaces. Many not only address functional needs, but also can be intergrated in an office design to add pops of color and texture. Acoustic clouds suspended from the ceiling in the above space add visual interest AND help knock down the echo that is bound to occur in a space with tons of windows and hard furniture elements. Below are other great examples of a acoustic products (the blue wall with the dots, and the yellow & gray hexagons).
Even in this digital age, the written word still has tremendous power to drive ideas to the top! Whiteboards and write on glass are other high functioning products that companies rely on all the time.
You may or may not also be aware of recent big leaps in technology changes for commercial flooring. Carpet tile is no longer just square or rectangular. Carpet tile shapes also now include hexagons and trapezoid shapes; these options make flooring designs SO much more interesting. As well, some LVT (luxury vinyl tile) is now being manufactured to be the same thickness as carpet tile, allowing for a smooth/ no tripping hazzard transition between different areas in an office.
Take a look below at a few great examples.
Even in this digital age, the written word still has tremendous power to drive ideas to the top! Whiteboards and write on glass are another high functioning product that companies rely on all the time.
You may or may not also be aware of recent big leaps in technology changes for commercial flooring. Carpet tile is no longer just square or rectangular. There include hexagons and trapezoid shapes; options make flooring designs SO much more interesting. As well, some LVT (luxury vinyl tile) is now being manufactured to be the same thickness as carpet tile, allowing for a smooth/ no tripping hazzard transition between different areas in an office.
Take a look below at a few great examples.
Presto Magico! (And it all comes together!)
Great designs create amazing environments–both in homes and in offices. Because we spend about half our lives working, having a well thoughtout space with unique products and a cohesive design makes us (and our employees) feel good about the company we work for, helps us be more productive, and can make work feel less like work.
A space with pops of color, the ability to sit or stand while working, an environment that allows us to communicate with a clear mind and connect well with our coworkers–these all allow us to deliver our expertise fluidly and to achieve the best we can for our company.
Bottom line: Good design = improved bottom line!
(By the way, the above images are a mix of our projects, amazing renderings of projects we are working on right now, and a few concept pics pulled from the internet to emphasize a product or idea. Particularly with the renderings, we’re curious if you can tell which ones are the digitially created versions….isn’t technology amazing!!?)