Home Working vs Office Working
Yahoo famously stopped their employees from working at home as part of a ‘new era of collaboration’, while companies such as PC manufacturer Dell have become well known for making use of remote working. No matter who is right, the debate once again thrusts the effects of working environments on productivity into the spotlight.
Irrespective of where people work, every business will experience varying levels of productivity and performance across its workforce – and every business faces the challenge of understanding how to get the best out of everyone.
Getting more from under-performers
Managers will always have their low-performing employees: individuals spending a bit too much time on social media, or being easily distracted by other people’s conversations. While employees such as these may be be less suited to working at home, the question needs to be raised as to why they are not giving your business their all.
For example, would they benefit from more challenging work, additional training or simply some inspiring changes to the layout and appearance of their workspace?
Getting the most from high-performers
Highly productive employees can often become the people who managers will turn to when the pressure is on and a project needs to be turned around quickly. Theses individuals need to be managed to ensure they don’t burn themselves out due to an ever-increasing workload.
Such people may be well suited to occasionally working productively and autonomously at home – and the change of routine can also be a positive benefit to their mental health and general wellbeing. To ensure that such people don’t only perform when at home, providing office space that gives them some of the benefits of home working (such as relative quiet and space to focus) is extremely important.
Getting the best from everyone
In our experience, the set up of your office environment can be key to getting the getting the best out of all types of individuals and teams. A refresh or refurbishment of your workspace is an opportunity to improve its layout by removing or managing distractions and enabling people to collaborate or quietly focus as necessary. Refreshing or refurbishing an office environment also makes employees feel valued – and increases their motivation, loyalty and, of course, their productivity.
And it’s not just office and meeting rooms that can deliver these benefits, the likes of canteens and cloakrooms have an important role to play too. Our recent work for Apetito is a great example of this.
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