Here is a theme on which experience and research agree: the working environment is not just a framework but a determining factor for the well-being of employees and the success of the company. As already discussed in previous articles, the environment influences productivity with several factors that impact on people’s mental wellbeing and performance. It’s therefore natural to ask: what is bad for productivity? What are the mistakes that must be avoided?
1. Stress free working environments
Let’s not let walls and furniture decide the design of spaces. It’s important to study working environments starting from the needs of those who live in them. In this particular historical moment, where people are increasingly choosing hybrid work, the study of space remains crucial and must respond to the need for great flexibility and adaptability.
2. Inadequate lighting
Poor lighting creates an unwelcoming environment and causes eye fatigue and tiredness. On the other hand access to abundant light, especially natural light, can increase productivity. As research confirms, sunlight has positive effects on health and performance too.
3. Wrong temperature
Too hot or too cold? Temperature also interferes with performance. An american study has shown that typing errors are more frequent with exaggeratedly high or low temperatures. A temperature between 20 and 25 degrees is recommended, which is good both for the health of employees and the planet.
“Working comfortably means working better”: this is the principle that should inspire all choices. It’s therefore essential to eliminate all possible disturbing elements and to devote time and attention to defining all furnishing elements. Of great importance is the choice of seating, because while it’s true that the perfect seat does not exist, it‘s also necessary to find the best seat for everyone’s needs.
5. Outdated technology
Outdated programmes and slow connections are the enemy of productivity not only because they waste time but also because they produce frustration and nervousness, polluting enthusiasm.
6. Bad workflow
“We’ve always done it this way” is not always the right answer. To improve productivity, it can be useful to review processes and steps to make the organisation run more smoothly and effectively.
7. Lack of flexibility
Despite much talk, work and private life are still seen and experienced as different and antithetical areas. The new vision of work-life integration is an invitation to live these dimensions in a harmonious way, without separating home and office but making room for work flexibility and empowerment of people.
8. Toxic corporate climate
A negative corporate culture can be extremely harmful. There are some signs to recognise it and a few ways to deal with it. The first step, as in many things, is communication.
Those who know the business world well know that there are no magic formulas that can guarantee productivity and success. Being aware of problems and obstacles that must be removed is, however, an important step to improve and work better.