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Why having plants in the office is the best thing for your bottom line

Why having plants in the office is the best thing for your bottom line

Stuck On The 9-5? Here’s How To Incorporate Plants Into A Workspace And Get Happy

There’s so much evidence out there that biophilic design using indoor plants can make a big impact on health, wellbeing and general happiness levels.

So maybe you’ve filled your home with plants and now you’re thinking ‘I still spend 8 hours a day in a gloomy oxygen-starved environment - what can I do?’. You could spread the plant love and go green in the office too.

If you’re the boss, great, if you’re an employee stick this blog under your manager’s nose because it answers the question ‘Aren’t plants a waste of money and time in a work environment?’. Nope. It’s proven that getting back to nature is in our DNA.

A leafy green environment is great for wellbeing. Our stress levels sink and happiness and productivity rise. Isn’t that what every HR department is after?

Not only do plants purify the air with oxygen and soak up nasties emitted by carpets and paint they just look good. Everyone likes to work and play in an attractive, healthy environment.

If you need inspiration or evidence for your boss Google Amazon’s new office in Seattle. They have 40,000 plants in three massive spheres that staff work in because it inspires creativity and brain function. Just. Amazing. But you don’t need a biosphere and a rainforest to incorporate plants into the office - here’s how.

Let staff choose a plant

This one is for the managers. Here’s a TED talk about an engineering company that bought 20 plants and let their staff choose their desk companion speed-dating style.

It led to a 20-40% increase in productivity which outstripped the few hundred dollars outlay. This company found labelling plants with ‘My friend is Mike’ or giving the plant a name meant staff nurtured their plant and worked alongside it. Their staff took five minutes a day to tend their plant and admire it. Those five minutes added up to some lost productivity but in the long run, it smashed productivity home.

These companion plants became a speck of friendship on their desk in a soulless, beige office. The staff loved their plant friends and no-one’s plant died. Not one single plant. And profits went up! It’s a win/win situation.

Choose plants that can survive the office environment

There’s nothing more disheartening than making a desk plant friend and watching in horror as it slowly dies despite your best green-fingered efforts. It’s because the plant doesn’t suit the office environment. So, choose wisely!

Low light conditions will suit a peace lily, snake plant, emerald palm, or an aglaonema whereas brighter light suits a fiddle leaf fig, a philodendron, or a succulent.

There’s No Room In The Office

Oh, but we disagree!

There’s loads of room in an office even if you’re switching hot desks each day. Start with a personally labelled plant on each desk. It’s up close and belongs to the staff member that sits there.

The engineering company from the TED talk above found staff kept their desks tidier when there was a plant to show off.

1. Use all the empty vertical space. Put up shelves - why not a green wall?
2. Hang plants from the ceiling - hey its wasted space and a Devils Ivy would love it there.
3. The floor – large pot plants on the floor grouped into threes or fives creates an
oasis of calm. Palm plants are a great choice.
4. Windowsills - choose wisely if it’s hot there. Succulents will love it but direct
burning light causes scorch marks on leafy greenery.
5. In the bathroom - Oh yes, fill the restroom with plants. By the sink, hanging from
the ceiling, on the floor, on the walls – make it a green escape.
6. The kitchen/break out area. Loads of plants love a kitchen such as snake plants and aloe vera. Make tea breaks a leafy, healthy environment for everyone.

Desk Jockeys Need Their Own Plant

If your office culture is anti-plant (oh the horror!) stick with a personal plant on your own desk. It really does make a difference to your day.

Plants make everyone proud to be a part of the office because it looks and feels good. These happy vibes and the clean air create an atmosphere where contented staff are able to work efficiently, creatively, and with a sense of wellbeing. Every desk needs a personal plant to become a really productive workspace.

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