In your organization, every individual has a unique personality that needs to be acknowledged. But for many, personal expression in the workplace is a struggle. A significant part of our lives is spent at work, and individuals can feel more comfortable and accepted by personalizing their workstations.
Companies often restrict personal items in the office to reduce distractions, keep a space clean or reduce the risk of theft. But there is a great deal of research that supports the personalization of workstations.
This group of office table is customized with fabric which help add privacy to an open environment and give people a way to display personal items. Holdres are also used to hold plants and other items.
A More Human Workplace
In the Steelcase article Express Yourself, Turnstone Design Director Markus McKenna stated, “People are actively rejecting this idea of corporate blandness. They want to embrace passion and meaning in their lives. They want their work to matter, and we agree. It’s time to build a more human workplace.”
Displaying family photos and personal mementos on a desk is an effective way to help people feel happier, healthier, and more productive at work. It also brings more personality to the workplace and creates a more inviting environment.
More Control, More Productivity
As open offices have grown in popularity, many people have been struggling with a loss of privacy and a reduced sense of autonomy. Giving people the option to personalize their spaces helps return a sense of control.
Research published by the Harvard Business Review found that workers who were able to personalize their space had a greater sense of place identity, translating into improved workplace engagement and a stronger connection to the company. When people feel valued by the company they work for, they’re more inspired to work harder and produce better work.
A workstation used screens to divide workspaces and give people an opportunity to pin up notes, photos, and drawings to personalize their space.
One of the most common complaints about open plan offices is that they can leave people feeling emotionally exhausted. In an open environment, employees need to use more energy to filter out distractions and concentrate on their work.
However, research has shown that personalized workstations can help reduce that sense of fatigue. Personalization helps with emotional fatigue, and those with personalized workplaces are more likely to have a greater sense of perceived privacy at work.
People at a standing-height workstation display personal photos on Tackable Screens.
While many companies are concerned that personalization would be a distraction at work, researchers have found the opposite to be true. A study conducted in the United Kingdom found that people who keep at least one picture or plant in their workstation are 15% more productive than those who don’t. And when compared to people who have to work in a more sterile space, employees who work in offices that allow for personalization can be up to 25% more productive.