There’s a saying that goes something like “If you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life.” That is true for so many people, who have fulfilling careers and passionate jobs, but for plenty of others, working isn’t always sunshine and rainbows. Are you currently working in a dull workspace/environment? Looking for some ways to jazz up your space, make it fun and uplifting? Check out these top five ways to create a fun work environment below!
In an article by David Sturt and Todd Nordstrom of Forbes, “The Conference Board reports that 53 percent of Americans are currently unhappy at work.” Sometimes you have a controlling boss, outdated electronic systems, insufficient supplies, or grumpy co-workers. All of these external factors can play a significant role in the office environment of your job, making it either a fun, positive one or a dull, negative one.
The stressors of a job are inevitable, but that doesn’t mean that working can’t be rewarding, uplifting, and generally enjoyable. There are physical things that you can do to your workspace to change the environment and there are also smaller, nuanced, non-tangible things that can alter the environment as well.
Fun Work Environment – Treat Your Workers / Coworkers
For employees, there’s nothing better than being recognized and appreciated for work. In fact, according to Sturt and Nordstrom, global studies reveal that 79 percent of people who quit their jobs cite ‘lack of appreciation’ as their reason for leaving. As you can tell, workers like to be appreciated and recognized as valuable, meaningful parts of a team. To help create a better and fun work environment, treat your workers to lunch once a week. Not only is this a great way to show you appreciate their work and efforts, but it also can help to build better connections among employees!
Fun Work Environment – Bring in Natural Lighting
Surrounding environments have a significant impact on our motivation to do work and get it done. Patterson specifically cites a study conducted by the Cologne University of Applied Sciences on the effects of color temperature and brightness on productivity, stating that, “researchers found that the students were more creative under warm light (3000k), yet concentrated better under cold light (6000k).” Exposure to harsh, fluorescent light can affect sleep patterns, energy, and mood while natural light has proved to be more beneficial. When changing up your workspace, bring in natural light to help increase productivity and boost the mood of your employees.
Fun Work Environment – Change Your Language
Part of what can influence a work environment is the specific language used between bosses and employees. The shift in authority and power between the two can sometimes cause a messy or nasty dichotomy, resulting in a negative work environment. To lighten this up and make your work environment more comfortable, try altering the language that you use to engage with your workers. Richard Henderson of Hiveage notes, “When you give staff direction, the language you use has a big effect on how they perceive what you’re saying and their role in the work. By using phrases like “why don’t we try” instead “you have to,” you demonstrate appreciation and collaboration.”
Schedule Fun Activities
Obviously the hours of the day on the job have to be solely dedicated to the work you have to accomplish during the day. However, this doesn’t mean that there can’t be fun activities or events thrown into the schedule from time to time! For instance, throwing a co-worker a birthday party by decorating their cubicle and having cake during lunchtime is a nice change of pace to liven up the work environment! Additionally, going out for drinks or scheduling a group event like bowling or mini-golfing can help build relationships and give everyone the chance to enjoy themselves.
Create a Clean Space
Displeasing visuals, such as clutter can be a strong factor in lowering motivation, mood, and energy. To help create a fun and more comfortable work environment, be sure to create (and maintain) a clean space in the office. Organize any kind of special documents, include plants or flowers around the office, incorporate interesting wall art, utilize natural lighting, and make sure that there is a place for everything. Doing so will show that you care about the quality of the office space as well as respect your employees enough to do so.
In a traditional sense, work environments can be dull, boring or even negative at points. The external stressors of working day after day can fuel this, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to brighten up the space and make your work environment more fun!