How the Color of Your Office Impacts Productivity

If your office walls are painted dull gray -- the cold color of warships, concrete and cubicles -- it’s time for a makeover.

A University of Texas study found that bland gray, beige and white offices induced feelings of sadness and depression, especially in women. Men, on the other hand, experienced similarly gloomy feelings in purple and orange workspaces.

Similar scientific studies have shown that colors don’t just change our moods, they also profoundly impact our productivity, for better and for worse. That’s why it’s best to decorate your workplace with a vibrant medley of stimulating hues that increase output and spark creativity.

Low-wavelength colors, like restful green and calming blue -- two of the most common colors in Mother Nature’s palette -- improve efficiency and focus. They also lend an overall sense of well-being. Bottom line: If you want happier, more effective workers, green and blue are wise choices.  

Red, a high-wavelength color, is active, intense and alarming at times. The passion-inspiring color, not accidentally the hue of valentines, fire extinguishers and fire trucks, increases the heart rate and blood flow upon sight. That said, if there’s something in the office you want to urgently draw employees’ eyes to, it’s best to paint it red.     

Meanwhile mellow yellow, often viewed by color psychologists as the shade of optimism, is energetic and fresh. It is believed to trigger innovation and is best used in work environments where artists, writers, designers, developers and other creative professionals work.

From the factory floor to the cubicle, to the meeting room and beyond, here’s how you can harness the power of color to boost employee output and creativity.

Every business owner, manager, or executive is always looking for productive results from their employees. Painting and decorating the office in certain colors have been proven to improve productivity. However, just one color may not do the trick. The color that improves productivity depends on the type of work each person does and while certain colors universally increase productivity, each person’s unique personality causes them to interpret colors differently. The level of intensity of each color also affects productivity.

Therefore, your office can increase productivity overall by first choosing the right combination of colors to paint and design with and each person can benefit in the productivity corner by making their desktop the color that most inspires their individual productivity and efficiency levels.

Blue

Blue is universally known as an excellent color for productivity. It also instills trust and loyalty. It is also a stable and calming color that helps workers focus on the task at hand. Some experts recommend adding in bits of orange elements to help invoke emotion too. Blue is a good color to paint the entire office and then use other colors as accents or desks for those individuals that match each color.

Green

Green is a good color for people who work long hours. It does not cause eye fatigue and helps you remain calm and efficient at the same time.

Yellow

Yellow is known as an optimistic color and can help improve productivity; however, the amount of yellow and intensity of the shade should be minimized so as not to cause eye fatigue or anger. Yellow helps stimulate creativity, so designers and people who need to be creative for their job should have color integrated into their workspace.

Red

If your job or task involves physical activity, then red is your productivity color. Red is a color that invokes emotion and passion. Therefore, red does not instill productivity in everyone. The color red has been shown to increase the heart rate and increase blood flow. If there is something in the office that you want to attract attention, paint it red.

 

Original Article | March 9, 2015 | 4 min read

 

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