Jan 20

How Working Styles Should Influence Your Office Design

When it comes to increasing your business’ productivity and effectiveness, understanding your employees is essential. Maximising your business’ effectiveness comes from knowing your employees and tailoring your approach to work to their strengths. One of the best ways to play into your employees’ strengths is to design your office in accordance with their workstyle. Intelligently using office design in this way allows for maximum productivity and draws on your employees’ inherent strengths, minimising resistance to their natural work style and allowing them to focus on doing what they do best.

 In this post, we will show you how to create an office which accommodates different work styles as well as help you seamlessly support different workstyles simultaneously. But first, we need to know what the work-styles are.

Work styles typically fall into one of four main categories. You will find almost all your employees show that they fall into one of the following or may blend a few styles.

Here is a quick guide:

Detail-Orientated workstyle

Detail-oriented people tend to shy away from the big-picture opting instead to make sure every minute detail is done correctly. They generally plan thoroughly, accounting for every aspect of a task before taking on the problem. They are organisational in nature and prefer to prepare than work it out as they go.

Emotionally-Orientated Workstyle

Best as part of a team, emotionally oriented employers are always there to offer support. They are great to keep team morale up and can complement other members for increased output and performance. These employees are often conversational and connect well with those around them including colleagues and customers.

Data-Orientated Workstyle

Data-oriented people are analytical in nature and let data drive their decisions. You likely have data-oriented employees, people who live by the numbers and love a spreadsheet. They take a logical approach to work and reaching goals.

Idea-Orientated Workstyle

Idea-oriented people are big-idea types. They often have big imaginations and if they are able to communicate their vision they can inspire and energise a team. Complimented well by a data-oriented colleague who can keep them grounded and realistic, idea-oriented people often have a creative streak. 

Collaborative Spaces For Teamwork

Collaborative spaces allow you to easily bring together different employee types for a well-balanced collaborative approach to a task. These space will enable idea-oriented people to shine by communicating their big picture with the colleagues and taking feedback from the data-oriented and detail-oriented colleagues who can determine the viability of the ideas and work out the minutia and steps to reaching the goal. Emotionally-oriented people also exhibit their best selves in collaborative spaces as it gives them a chance to use their interpersonal skills. 

Quiet Spaces For Hyper-Focused Working

Whilst not ideal for emotionally oriented, quiet spaces offer the perfect opportunity for detail-oriented and data-oriented workers to focus on their strengths. By providing small spaces free of distraction or even creating a shared area which enforces a “quiet rule” you can provide a space for workers to get into the nitty-gritty and best leverage their data and detail-minded personality.

Quiet spaces and collaborative spaces are the two best and easiest to implement ways to allow employees to lean into their strengths. Quiet spaces can cover a large area – perfect if you have a department filled with data and/or detail-oriented employees such as an analytical marketing department. However, it is probably healthy for the business to have a mix of work styles throughout the company in which case offering small one or two-person rooms where employees can step aside for a distraction-free, hyper-focused work session.

Collaborative spaces will need to accommodate teams of people. A whiteboard or two will also be useful in these spaces as big-thinkers will often prefer to artistically share their ideas with the freedom to make changes and crowdsource information as opposed to a PowerPoint presentation which may be more of a data-driven team members style.

If you want to tailor your workspace to accommodate your employees’ unique workstyles get in touch with us today. Here at Zentura, we offer all aspects of office design from office partitioning (to create those quiet spaces we talked about earlier) to office lighting. To speak to us about office refurbishment and design contact us on 020 7856 0460 or complete our contact form.