Workplace Hack: Get More Plants To Increase Productivity

Staying indoors all day can be a creativity killer. When I’m struggling to get stuff done, I often yearn for the great outdoors and find going out for a quick walk usually refreshes me.

Ideally, we’d all be able to work outside for a portion of each day but for office workers, this isn’t really an option. While a walk around the block might be enough to refresh you, bringing nature into your office might be a great way of keeping you focussed and productive in the first place.

There’s a growing body of research suggesting that bringing plants into the office can have a positive effect on productivity.

One 2011 study found that participants who performed a reading task at a desk surrounded by plants were able to improve their task scores whereas those at an empty desk were not. These findings were repeated in a 2013 study that found participants performed best with plants at their desks and a window view.

Some researchers have suggested that being able to look up and see plants in the office can have similar attention restoration effects to taking a walk or break from work.

To follow this workplace hack, try introducing more plants into your office. Why not get your team involved by asking them to help you choose plants and decide where they should go? If possible, you could also try to arrange desks so that people can sit near windows and get a real glimpse of nature. Don’t have many windows? Keep an empty desk near a window so team members can take turns sitting there when they’re lacking inspiration.

How do you optimize your workspace for productivity? Share your ideas in the comments below or on Twitter for the chance to be featured in our next Workplace Hack!

This hack is part of a series of weekly workplace hacks that teaches you about collaboration, productivity and time saving tips. Published every Wednesday.

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