How your work environment affects your productivity

How your work environment affects your productivity

When it comes to work we all want to be as productive as possible.

There are things we can do to take care of ourselves like making sure we get enough sleep that can then help us work more efficiently.  We can also make shifts in our mindset to boost productivity throughout the day.

It’s not just us though, there are all sorts of other factors that can influence productivity, from the management style at work to the physical environment of our office space.

How your work environment affects your productivity


Making sure that the people working for them are happy and productive is key for employers.  On the technical side things like this hr software solution from Thirsty Horses can be a big help in keeping things running smoothly for their staff.

But there are also various other things that can be done to improve happiness and productivity in the workplace.


Improve the lighting

Numerous studies have found that lighting can have a big impact on our mood and our productivity.

If at all possible offices and work spaces should have plenty of natural light, and be bright and airy.  Natural lighting boosts our mood and our energy levels and so makes us work more efficiently and be more productive.

It’s also been found that companies with well-lit offices tend to have lower levels of staff absence as the people working there don’t get as run down as those who work in dark, gloomy environments.


Introduce plants

As well as letting in more natural light, bringing nature itself into an office can help boost productivity.

A study carried out in 2014 found that having plants in the workplace significantly increased workers’ satisfaction and levels of focus.  Lead researcher Marlon Nieuwenhuis reported, “Simply enriching a previously Spartan space with plants served to increase productivity by 15 per cent.”

So while a crisp, white, minimalist office might be thought to be perfect for productivity, with nothing to distract staff from their work, that’s really not the case.  Having enough plants around the office so that everyone can easily see at least one is far better for employee well-being and productivity.

natural light and plants boost productivity in offices


Provide a comfortable space for breaks

When we have the opportunity to take regular, quality breaks from our work we tend to be more energised and productive when we get back to it.

So creating a pleasant and comfortable space for staff breaks, and encouraging everyone to use it throughout the day, is a great way to boost productivity.  Studies show that the optimal ratio for productivity is for us to rest for 17 minutes after every 52 minutes of diligent work.

It makes sense really, if we try and work too hard for too long we’ll wear ourselves out and end up making mistakes and actually being less productive.

Our brains need regular breaks and periods of rest for us to be able to work at our optimum levels.  So employers should be encouraging their staff to head to the break room and make a cuppa now and then, or pop out for a quick walk in the fresh air.


With these things in mind, employers can create great working environments for their staff to be happier and far more productive.  We can apply the same ideas in our day to day lives too, making sure we get enough natural light and regularly spend time outside in nature.


Disclaimer: this is a collaborative post

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