Sure, we don’t expect every day at the office to be a carnival. Although it’d be nice. Popcorn, elephant rides, your boss putting his head in a lion’s mouth… Anyway, suffice to say a little excitement would be a welcome event in most offices. Further, it turns out that being bored in the office can be a real productivity killer. Employees who are bored in the office are less efficient, more prone to mistakes, and occasionally even fail at tasks on purpose. Those blows to your bottom line can be more costly than a barrel of monkeys. Here are the top 5 reasons why your office is boring, and how you can jazz things up.
#5. Your office décor stinks
Grey walls, grey cubes, darker grey carpet… no wonder your employees are bored in the office. A recent study found that 80% of participants thought that the color of their surroundings affected their moods. If that’s the case, you want your office to affect moods positively. You don’t have to go crazy with the colors, but consider painting just one or two walls of your office in a sunny color to spur productivity.
#4. Your office never collaborates
Boring things are always better in a group. Teamwork keeps employees from being bored in the office by moving everyone to a space away from their desks, and allowing everyone to talk through ideas aloud. Teamwork also helps co-workers get to know each other, which increases employee engagement and productivity. Tasks can also be split up, so that work doesn’t become too repetitive. Speaking of…
#3. Your office workflow is repetitive
Sometimes this can’t be helped. However, if you notice that employee productivity is dropping, see if you can set a system that allows employees to trade tasks, clients, or hours with each other. Not only will this keep people from being bored in the office, hopefully it will help employees better appreciate the jobs that their co-workers do.
#2. Your office lacks goals
Goals help break up otherwise boring tasks—just ask those people who build things out of toothpicks. If your employees don’t have measurable goals, ask the supervisors in the department to create benchmarks. Consider short-term and long-term goals that are measurable and attainable. A chart doesn’t hurt, either.
#1. Your office isn’t challenging
Employees need a challenge to motivate productivity. Moreover, they need a challenge that is attainable, meaningful, and has some measurable consequences for failure. Sound like a tall order? In some ways it is. However, a challenge like this should already be part of your model for business growth. Share your company challenges with your employees, and show them how their success or failure contributes to the success or failure of the company as a whole. Be in tune with the abilities of your employees, and be sure to set more difficult challenges as their skills grow.
Your office is also boring because it doesn’t have a cotton candy machine. Sorry. Them’s the breaks.
Does any item on our list resonate with the current state of your office? Tell us how you plan on spicing things up in the comments.
IMAGE: Courtesy of Flickr by makelessnoise