Boost Your Productivity Through Your Workspace
- What is productivity and its importance to businesses
- Six common factors affecting workers’ productivity
- Suggestions to mitigate these factors
Source: Post Bulletin
Productivity, a word that we are all too familiar with, is a measurement of result versus the effort required. Be it the employer or employee, any working individual understands that productivity is a key factor to achieving better performance.
High productivity translates into greater results which in return generates higher profits or better appraisals. However, even the most committed worker suffers impaired productivity due to poor workplace ergonomics
Here are six tips to combat it and reap more fruits for your effort.
Keep Your Desk Clean With A Mini Vacuum Cleaner
Not everyone is gifted with a high tolerance for poor cleanliness. Many of us simply cannot work in a messy, dirty environment - it would be like going to war every day. Clutter has been said to limit the ability of the brain to process information which in return, hinders our ability to focus and efficiently complete a task.
An unkempt and dirty work desk is never appealing to work with. Its poor visual appearance (even without the assaulting stench) kills our morale and motivation. Our energy level automatically takes a nosedive upon realising the amount of work that has to go into getting it cleaned before any work could be done on it.
Keeping your space tidy and clean keeps your attention on what’s important and not the eraser dust that’s scattered a few inches away from you. A simple trick to this would be to invest in a mini vacuum cleaner. Small but mighty, this gadget effectively sucks up any dust or biscuit crumbs leftover at teatime.
Dive Into Your Personal Space With Earphones
Source: HR Grapevine
Where space is limited and open workspaces are encouraged, it is truly difficult not to be distracted. When cubicles are non-existent or kept sufficiently low (just enough to divide the desk), something happening at the corner of the office is bound to catch your attention (more so, if you have an alert personality).
According to the World Green Building Council, 99% of people reported impaired concentration caused by common office noise like phones and background speech.
Earphones with noise cancellation screen out as much as 3/4 of office noise hence, blocking out chatter and sounds that distracts you from entering your “work zone”. In addition, you benefit from the neck cramp of squeeze-holding your phone with your shoulders while typing away at the computer.
Here is a great article to understand the benefits and drawbacks of wireless earbuds that you should read before getting one.
Proper Lighting Every Day, Keeps The Doctor Away
.. that is, until old age kicks in.
Jokes aside, harsh or poor lighting can negatively impact employees productivity and should not be taken lightly. Squinting your eyes to focus under poor lighting causes eye strain and fatigue. The stress will then kick in, followed by a jackhammer migraine and everyone knows migraine is a recipe for disaster when you need to activate your thinking cap.
A study by Alan Hedge discovered that employees working in a daylit office environment reported a whopping 84% drop in symptoms of eyestrain, headaches and blurred visions.
But don’t go hacking a big hole in the wall just yet.
Adding in a monitor screen lamp or a desk lamp to your workspace would sufficiently mitigate the issue. It is recommended to use blue-enriched, 17,000K light bulbs as they are proven to improve mood, mental vitality and alertness which in return, boost productivity by 19.4%.
Boost Comfort With Ergonomic Gadgets
Source: Yanko Design
Did you know? According to Trades Union Congress (TUC), 1 in 50 workers suffers from Repetitive Strain Injury which includes pain and immobility in the muscles from the fingers to the neck. And even higher (as high as 1 in 4 workers) in industries where computers are involved in their daily tasks.
Our hands and arms are the second most hard working assets (first place going to our brain) as we hustle through eight hours a day. It goes without saying, it is important to take good care of them. This can be done by simply switching to an ergonomic keyboard and mouse.
Stay Hydrated With A Vacuum Flask
I know this advice seems like utter crap, going against every working productive tip out there, but hear me out first. Dehydration from working is unfortunately a thing. Just being 3 - 4% dehydrated can lower your performance by approximately 25 - 50%.
Keeping a vacuum flask of water beside, the table encourages regular water intake. Plus, your water remains warm throughout the day without requiring you to make a trip to the pantry every 5 minutes. Centralized air-conditioning office anyone?
Microbreaks are important without a doubt (if you can have them), however, people with time-constraint jobs often procrastinate their water intake when their mugs are emptied. As a result, they only drink one to two cups of water a day or end up chugging gallons of water at the end of the day.
Okay, maybe not gallons but you get the picture.
What You Put Into Your Lungs Matters
“Just because you can’t see something doesn’t mean it isn’t there” is a famous quote by Emma Hart. Pollution is all around us - the dust in the air, the emissions from carpets - but they are invisible to the naked eye.
A study revealed that workers are 5 - 6% more productive when they are exposed to quality air. Poor air quality, on the contrary, has been shown to cause irritation in the respiratory system, induce mild headaches and affect blood pressure.
While growing plants indoors does improve the air quality in your workspace, not many plants can strive with lowlights. Surprisingly, the installation of air purifiers can improve the quality of indoor air. HEPA air filters have been known to effectively trap 99.97% of pollutants as well as moulds and bacterias circulating the air.
Even if it is not exactly photosynthesized fresh air, investing in an air purifier keeps the air surrounding your workspace ventilated and clean.