It’s not easy to change somebody’s mind. You might say it’s incredibly difficult, even. Those of you who have ever argued with a stubborn relative over Thanksgiving dinner can attest to this. It takes only 7 seconds for somebody to form that vital first-impression. After that, you’re fighting up-hill to change their mind.
The first impression doesn’t just apply to the way you dress or groom, but also your environment. A messy desk tells somebody that you’re scattered. A bare-bones office tells them you’re cheap. Once the impression is set, good luck getting them to see things differently.
This is why it’s important that your office (or home-office, even) is furnished ‘on-purpose’. By furnishing with intent (rather than just throwing random things together) you can craft a first-impression that helps land you in the good graces of anybody who enters. When I first started my business, I must have visited all the office furniture companies El Monte CA before I found something that worked. Let me tell you: it was absolutely worth it.
First off, I’d like to stress that your goal isn’t just to “avoid bad design”. It’s not about not design poorly, but intentionally doing something unique. You can be viewing your office cosmetics as an opportunity. An opportunity that your competition is probably ignoring. Wouldn’t it be nice if your clients were wowed before you even opened your mouth, and your employees were proud to post selfies from work? It’s these overlooked benefits that separated companies like Apple from companies like IBM.
Secondly, the furniture should be COMFORTABLE. This doesn’t just put your visitors and clients at ease, but your employees will unconsciously thank you for it. Bad associations are formed when employees leave work sore or develop back problems.
Note: by comfortable I don’t just mean “plush seating.” Desks should be big enough for monitors, keyboards, mice, laptops, and of appropriate height.
Third, try not to be a complete cheapskate! It’s certainly easy to favor inexpensive furniture, but you might want to be very careful when doing so. Buying office furniture isn’t an expense, it’s an INVESTMENT. Cheap furniture isn’t just ugly and uncomfortable, but it also wears out faster. You might be saving a buck in the first month, but those expenses are going to add-up and kill your overall revenue and return on investment.
Fourth, something often overlooked is the TYPE OF LIGHTING your space is illuminated with. The more natural, blue tinted light you can fill your space with, the better. Studies have shown that an abundance of natural light keeps occupants happier and much more alert. Yellow incandescent lighting can cause unnecessary fatigue (and resulting performance drop) and the green tinted florescent lights can cause unease. This makes office lighting more important than ever.
It’s not an overstatement to say that interior design is important, and when it’s a place of business that sentiment goes double. Intentionally designing your office environment can give you a competitive edge, because it’s something your competition probably isn’t doing.