Everyone needs a few basic supplies to get through their working day: a computer, a chair, coffee (obviously), and, well...that’s probably it.
But, engineer and owner of a small company in Canada, Mike Robinson, has found making one addition to his staff members’ desks could increase their output by around 30 per cent.
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So, what was it?
Chocolate? Motivational posters? A desk fan?
Nope. A plant.
Robinson told a TEDxWhiteRock audience that while initially he thought plants would be a distraction for his staff, it turns out they increased productivity. A lot.
“I did my own mathematics, and I reckon that we might be doing about 30 percent more business per staff [member],” he told the audience.
While it’s not exactly a scientific measurement, Robinson runs a small company, so it isn’t hard to notice increased business output.
But, it turns out he isn’t the first person to notice that plants on office desks make a big difference to business.
Forbes reported that employees are around 15 per cent more productive when working in a green office than their peers working in less so environments.
“A green office appeared to provide a boost to employee engagement, concentration levels and perceived air quality all showing a rise after the introduction of plants into the office,” Forbes reported.
The CEO of workplace enhancement company, Leesman, Tim Oldman, told Forbes that after surveying 200,000 employees worldwide, 77 per cent stated that natural light was important to them, but only 58 per cent were satisfied with the natural light in their office.
A similar percentage of employees placed importance on air quality, but only 38 per cent were satisfied.
But, perhaps if workplaces tended to their staff members’ needs, it would result in a happier, more efficient environment, like Robinson’s.
“Our office is a more contented place, a relaxed place, and a place that I’m proud to be a part of [it], and a big part of that is the personal plant,” he told the TEDx crowd.
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