Summer is here: The benefits of providing outdoor workspaces
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Working outside the confines of an office can help employees become more productive and boost their morale. Some companies provide their staff with Wi-Fi–capable outdoor work areas, such as courtyards, rooftop gardens, and patios. Discover some of the benefits of these types of workspaces.
Rather than grabbing a cup of coffee the next time you feel fatigued at work, grab your laptop and head to an outdoor workspace. Studies have shown that nature is energizing, physically and mentally.
Nature has the ability to improve our moods and reduce the risk of depression. Happier employees make for better overall office morale. Researchers have found that nature can make people more generous, trusting, and helpful — qualities that can strengthen interoffice relationships.
Spending time outside has known health benefits, including reduced inflammation, pain relief, and lower blood pressure. Working outside, particularly standing or walking around, can help counter the negative effects of sitting in an office chair all day.
Researchers have also found that spending time outdoors can improve short-term memory and ability to focus. They liken the effect to that of meditating. If employees are having trouble paying attention at work, encourage them to sit outside for a stimulating change of scenery.
Lower Stress Levels
Being outdoors has stress-relieving effects, including lowering heart rate and blood pressure. Escaping to a special workspace free of fluorescent lights, the churning noise of servers and HVAC units, and constant interoffice chatter and distractions can help reduce anxiety.
Boosts for Creativity
Working outside can provide inspiration and help people overcome creative blocks at work. In one study, researchers found that individuals who spent time in nature performed 50% better on a creativity test than those who didn’t.
Summer Office Tips
To give employees the benefits of working outside when the weather is pleasant, try the following outdoor workspace ideas:
- Set up Wi-Fi and electrical outlets around the office building.
- Equip a patio or courtyard with comfortable tables, chairs, and umbrellas.
- Designate one corner of the outdoor space as a meeting, interview, or conference area.
- Hold walking meetings to get the blood flowing.
- Practice team-building activities or group exercises outside.
Working outside, whether it’s for 20 minutes or a half day, can improve your employees’ productivity, health, and morale. Encourage your team to experience these benefits by creating a welcoming outdoor workspace. If you need some summer office tips to help you create an outside work area, contact Beaux-Arts Group.