5 Office Design No-No’s

It’s simple to see when office design is done well, it’s far more complicated to know how it is done, and, even more importantly, how not to do it. We’ve been talking to interior office designers, to gain a few hints and tips for how to design your office. They’ve provided us with their five office design no-no’s, and we’ll share them with you here. 

1. Neglecting the reception area

Waiting room
A welcoming reception can make or break your first impression
It’s easy to put the space where the majority of your employees work at the top of your design list, it’s the area you receive most of your internal feedback and spend most of your time in. However, neglect your reception area at your peril. Studies have shown, that people assess trustworthiness in around a tenth of a second. Where do your customers, clients, and potential employees spend their first tenth of a second in your business? The reception area. 
Ensure your reception is calm and welcoming, it is not a location for storage or delivery. Choose comfortable chairs that are easy to sit in and get out of. Make sure your visitors are hydrated and refreshed by installing well designed water coolers, and efficient coffee machines. 


2. Sacrificing quality for price

Online research
Check and cross check internet reviews
We all have a bottom line that we have to be aware of, and navigate within, but this does not mean that quality should be sacrificed. Take time to find the best product or service available within your budget. Use search engines to research what people are saying about what you’re looking to buy, online reviews are the most objective source of information, so seek out as many of these as possible prior to making a purchase. 

3. Not consulting employees

Women working
Employees: The true workplace experts
When designing an office environment, you will want it to suit the workers using it. Do you know who the best experts on this matter will be? The workers themselves! Take time to gather worker feedback on how they prefer working and what is realistic within their workplace. 
Understand which teams collaborate with other teams on a regular basis, and position these groups near one another to foster communication and cross-silo working. 

4. Not utilising natural resources 

Office
Natural sunlight transforms an office space
Our bodies need natural light and air. Wherever possible, make the best possible use of natural light with large windows, mirror usage, and reflective surfaces. Access to natural light should boost serotonin levels, and vitamin D levels, within the work-space, making for happier, healthier workers. 
Stuffy offices are a breeding ground for germs and viruses. Take care to facilitate natural ventilation within the office environment, using open-able windows wherever possible. 

5. Not sticking to a consistent theme

Modern meeting room
Consistency is key
Most brands have an established theme or look, that they adhere to in all brand communications and products. Fewer brands follow this through in the workplace environment. Keep the company colours and themes consistent in the office design and workers will find it flows far more naturally through their work and outputs. 
It is important to note, that we say company colours and themes. This doesn’t stop at splashing colour on a feature wall. Discuss the brand features of the company with the marketing department. If your company aims to appear young and fun, consider your office furniture. Leather chairs and desktops do not suggest either of these themes, but mac-books and bubble chairs might. If your company aims to be holistic and spiritual, you might want to consider a signature office scent that can be pumped through the workplace with a plug in device or with natural incense. 

These tips should set you on your path to office design perfection. If in doubt, remember the two C’s – consulting and consistency! What details do you despise in office design? Let us know in the comments below.