Steps to Management Success – Step 70: Location Isn’t Just about Real Estate

Written By Rick Frishman Published April 1st, 2010

STEP SEVENTY

Location Isn’t Just about Real Estate

Although it’s often taken for granted, the physical, aesthetic, and ergonomic components of your workplace can affect morale and productivity. Cluttered, crowded, grungy offices, with people having to squeeze around each other in narrow hallways, add a significant load to everyone’s “stressometer.”

WHAT IT MEANS: Strive to offer your employees—and yourself—a comfortable, clean, and even attractive office environment that exhibits the company pride you would expect from your workers. Are the lighting and ventilation and office furniture up to par? Is there sufficient storage? When people look at the walls, will they notice interesting art or peeling paint? Such human-comfort factors are often avoided during the start-up phase of a business in favor of “pursuing the dream,” but once there are more people on board and enough operating capital to move your business off Mom’s folding table, you do need to design a workspace that works for you, not against you.

ACTION PLAN: Add some plants and some office art, and encourage employees to add personal touches to their work areas. Consider little amenities—like coat closets, a company bulletin board, or desktop lamps. An office should not be a static place; it should change and evolve regularly.

EVEN BETTER: Develop a wish list of office upgrade ideas (new furniture, expanded storage capability, office art collection, remodeled reception area, etc.) and budget for it. Prioritize on the basis of urgency of need and/or potential value. Investing in the look and feel of your workplace is not just cosmetic—it says something about the professionalism and stability of your company, and even more, that you’re committed to giving your people the kind of people-friendly workplace that’s more conducive to success.

(Excerpted from: 10 Clowns Don’t Make a Circus. . . and 249 Other Critical Management Success Strategies by Steven Schragis and Rick Frishman)


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