Dull workplaces 'stifling creativity'

Having a home-based office that is tax-deductible is seemingly not the only reason that many freelancers might be reluctant to set up at client workplaces.

Unveiling research that confirms what many creatives have long suspected, consultancy Overbury said that “dull” workspaces hurt ideas-generation and thwart innovative thinking.

Having polled 2,000 adults who work in offices, the refurbishment consultant said more than a third described their office as ‘demotivating’ and a quarter called it ‘sedate and silent.’

Problematically if their job involves working on innovative projects, almost one in ten of the respondents went as far as to condemn their workspace a “creative and cultural desert.”

Asked what they would change about their office, the highest proportion said ‘more social space,’ mainly as most believe their best ideas stem from impromptu chats with colleagues.

Better heating facilities is the second biggest wish, followed by a list of others including better quality furnishings and access to food/drink, on top of the desire for ‘nicer coffee.’

Overall, one in three said they felt unable to generate new ideas at work while 35% preferred to work from home “whenever possible,” saying they find their workplace to be uninspiring.

“At a time when organisations in the UK are looking to their staff to drive innovation and competitive advantage, it is worrying to hear that so many employees are lacking the tools they need to be creative,” said Anthony Brown, a director at Overbury.

“Organisations are missing a golden opportunity to foster greater ideas generation by putting creative collaboration and social interaction at the heart of their office design.”


Mar 1, 2013
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