I invited Matt Lee to write a guest blog about Home Offices since we are spending so much time in them!
More people are working from home these days. For many, it’s their first foray into working remotely. Before the coronavirus pandemic, only around 3.4% of the US worked from their home. Now, approximately 20% of the workforce has shifted to remote work, and that number continues to climb as COVID-19 safety concerns continue to grow.
In fact, experts predict that up to 35% of the entire workforce in the United States will move entirely and permanently remote in the coming year.
Working from home has plenty of advantages. Companies have less overhead, and employees have more autonomy, less drive time, and more freedom throughout their workday.
However, these benefits aren’t without their challenges. There are numerous distractions when working from home. Plus, without constant oversight, some workers find it difficult to keep themselves motivated. So, it’s no surprise that many people who are working from home struggle with productivity.
The good news is that there are several things you can do in your home office to boost your productivity. With a few interior design changes, you can quickly transform your at-home workspace into a productivity zone.
Here are a few interior design ideas for your home office that will boost productivity.
Carve Out Some Space
Staying focused can be difficult if your home office isn’t in a separate room. You might have children, pets, or a spouse, not to mention the added distractions like Netflix and Amazon deliveries. If you’re working in a space that has constant foot traffic or distractions, it’s essential to carve out an area that’s clearly for work. If you don’t have a separate room, consider investing in some architectural screen panels to create walls, and create a distraction-free workspace.
Minimize and De-Clutter
Minimizing isn’t just a trendy thing to do. It’s a design philosophy centered around the idea that less is more. If you get rid of the things that you don’t need, you’ll have more space for the things that matter. Put some energy into decluttering your office. The more cluttered your space is, the harder it is to focus. Strip your office down to the bare minimum, so you can easily stay on task.
Choose Your Colors Wisely
Research indicates that certain colors actually increase productivity. Many savvy business owners use this color theory to paint their offices and ensure their employees are primed for productivity and success. Blue is a go-to for boosting productivity and creating calmness. Yellow is a terrific color for creative inspiration, but it can also increase anxiety. Reds are used to boost productivity in jobs that require manual labor. Most people avoid greys because they can increase apathy. Consider repainting your office and injecting more blues to boost productivity.
Adjust the Lighting
If your lights are too dim, they can make you feel tired and increase eyestrain. If they’re too harsh, they can make you agitated and cause headaches. Take inventory of how your lighting could be impacting your mood and productivity. When employees have access to natural sunlight, they experience boosted mood, increased organization, and improved overall job satisfaction. So, if you have access to a window, consider keeping it open and working with natural lighting, instead. If not, find lighting fixtures that allow you to see clearly without being distracting.
Add in Some Greenery
Did you know that plants can improve productivity? A recent study found that when employees were exposed to plants at work, they showed reduced rates of anxiety and depression, were more organized, and boasted higher levels of overall job satisfaction. So, think about adding a few plants to your home office. Go for low-maintenance varieties like succulents, cacti, or bonsai trees.
Design for Your Success
The real added benefit to working remotely is that you can create an ideal environment catered specifically to you. Most traditional office settings don’t account for individual preferences, and so you’re stuck with whatever your bosses deemed most beneficial for the whole company.
So, think about your daily work and the things that cause you to become distracted or lose focus. If your chair isn’t comfortable, swap it out with a more ergonomic option. If your desk is too hard to keep clean, swap it out for a solid surface countertop. If you find that you aren’t inspired by the wall art you have, then change it out with pictures of your family instead.
The secret to increasing your productivity is to design your home office for you. If you keep in mind the ideas above and stay in-tune with your own needs, you will be a productivity powerhouse in no time.
Matt Lee is the owner of the Innovative Building Materials blog and a content writer for the building materials industry. He is focused on helping fellow homeowners, contractors, and architects discover materials and methods of construction that save money, improve energy efficiency, and increase property value.