Here at Office Needs, we’re pretty big on office furniture and interiors. This week, for the final part of ‘Celebrating Spaces’, we wanted to talk about some of the trends we’ve noticed in many successful workplaces – and why we believe you should be trying them too!
1. Get Your Green Fingers Out in the Workplace…
Loads of showrooms we visited were showing off the power of plants – not only are they a great way to add a dash of extra colour in your office (and we were particularly loving the splashes of green against this year’s strong presence of pink fabrics), but they also oxygenate the room and help boost productivity.
Have you tried dotting plants around your office yet? It’s a lovely way to customise your workspace, and different plants have a variety of different benefits (keep your eyes on this blog, as we’ll be sharing an article soon listing our favourite office plants).
Our highlights: the ‘Living Wall’ created by Scotscape, in the Buronomic showroom. A genuinely innovative idea involving turning a wall into a sea of greenery – and certainly a great talking point!
2. The Breakout Star? Breakout Furniture!
Everywhere we went, manufacturers were tempting us with a comfortable place to sit down – from stylish dining furniture to striking meeting booths.
Have you created a welcoming breakout space in your workplace yet? A good breakout space might be used for a variety of purposes, from eating to informal meetings. We believe it’s important to put as much effort in to your breakout space as you do into your desks and office chairs – although you and your colleagues might spend most of your time at your desks, tempting people away from them can have a huge amount of benefits.
If your team can be welcomed into a stylish, comfortable eating area, they are less likely to spend their whole day glued to a screen (you should generally be taking a brief break for every hour of computer use, if possible), and will gain extra chances to bond with other colleagues. If inviting meeting spaces are provided, this will also encourage more brainstorming sessions and other collaborative work, especially if the booths are designed with technological integration in mind.
Our highlights: being spoiled for choice by Lee & Plumpton’s wall of colourful breakout seating, and listening to the amazing acoustic benefits of Era Screen’s meeting booths.
3. Furniture that keeps you moving… even when you’re still!
We’re all for making your workplace as comfortable as possible, but we’re also big fans of anything that keeps your body moving at regular intervals throughout the day!
While some of the ideas we saw might have been a bit eccentric for most companies to use on a regular basis (a bike that makes a smoothie when you pedal, anyone?), there were also some great, subtle ideas to make sure you’re keeping active in the workplace.
Unsurprisingly, standing desks were on offer around the festival, since it’s now a well-established idea that sitting and standing throughout the working day is a great way to improve your productivity and wellbeing at work. However, we were also pleasantly surprised to see that there were some interesting takes on this trend – including programmable Cosine sit-stand desks over at Tangent, where hot-desking workers could have their own desk height setting saved on an electronic sit-stand desk. To us, that feels like a great incentive to make sure workers keep using sit-stand facilities at regular intervals throughout the day!
Our highlights: engaging our core muscles with Metalicon’s clever combination of a standing desk, and a balance board (you stand on this innovative piece of kit while working, and it forces you to keep slightly re-adjusting your position, thereby burning extra calories). It certainly helped us to justify the free fish and chips on offer afterwards…