I know full well how bland working in an office can be. All those grey workstations, beige carpet, dirty cream walls... how is anyone supposed to feel inspired to work??? From day one of sitting at a new desk I would put my mark on it and make it feel more like somewhere I could spend 8 hours each day. Photos of friends and family, inspiring phrases or quotes, holiday postcards, images torn from magazines - anything to brighten-up the space.
So, when I was asked to provide some indoor potted plants for a corporate client recently I could 100% relate to their client brief. They wanted to 'green-up the workspace'!! Who doesn't?
It's amazing what a difference a plant can make to an office environment. And don't go thinking that fake plants can provide the same effect. Fake plants don't need love and attention nor do they give back either. Having a living, growing plant to look after requires you to think of something other than those boring spreadsheets, "hmm does my plant need water? maybe a it needs to move to the other window...."
Research conducted by a number of Universities including Oxford University and Washington State University indicate the following about plants in the work space:
- Aid in cleaning the air and a creating a healthier environment by reduction of VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds)
- Plant-filled rooms contain 50% to 60% fewer airborne moulds and bacteria than rooms without plants, therefore, by cleaning workplace air with plants, staff illness and costs of sick leave can be reduced
- Employees tend to be less stressed and have better reaction rates
- Positive effects on both employee perceptions and dispositions, which ultimately may lead to increased staff retention.
- Plants absorb noise in busy office environments. Improving the ambiance and reducing distraction, it may increase productivity.