The Benefits of Biophilic Design in the Workplace

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Anyone with a keen eye for design will have spotted the rise of the ‘Biophilia’ design trend. Plants; they are everywhere at the moment.

Planters of succulents, shelves of spider plants and ferns, indoor hanging plants in every room, even printed wallpaper with banana leaf or palm leaf patterns. However, there is much more to this trend than just aesthetics.

The Rise of Biophilia

The whole concept of Biophilia (The love of nature and living things) connects us to the wider world and our innate desire to protect and nurture that which feeds us and does us good, both physically and also emotionally.

One of the ‘founding fathers’ of the psychology behind biophilia was Edward O Wilson. He coined the term Biophilia and wrote the book of the same name, first published in 1984 and still widely available if you want a more in-depth read on the topic.

A synopsis of the subject and some of the research that has come out of it can be found here:  Biophilia white paper.  Another great source of information and brilliant blogs is the Human Spaces blog, and you can subscribe for free. In addition, a recent blog post from Planteria Group looked at The Three Pillars of Biophilic Design.

 

The Benefits of Biophilia

There are many benefits to having plant displays and other biophilic elements in your work or home interior. Biophilic elements refer to anything that evokes the sense of the beauty of the natural world, such as water features, fish tanks or plants.

You can also add natural analogues which are patterns and design styles that mimic nature – think honeycomb patterns, furnishings with curved edges even artificial planting or wood-effect flooring. It’s not so much about the what, it’s more about how the inclusion of biophilic elements make people feel.

 

Here are 5 benefits of Biophilic Design in the Workplace:

1. Live plants improve air-quality.

They do this by using carbon dioxide (bad for us) to produce oxygen (good for us). They also transpire through their leaves, making the air more humid, which is excellent for combating the problem of dry-air, a widely reported problem in air-conditioned offices.

Additionally, plants absorb VOCs (volatile organic compounds) such as chemicals that are widely used in domestic cleaning products, contained within some carpets and emitted from electronics. More about improving air-quality here.

 

   2. Make you more creative and (as much as 15% more) productive.

A series of studies from Exeter University concluded that employees were 15% more productive when “lean” workplaces were filled with just a few houseplants, as employees who actively engage with their surroundings are more efficient and more creative workers.

 

3. Helps relieve stress and improve mental well-being.

Stress is a known cause of both mental health disorders and cardiovascular diseases. According to the World Health Organisation mental health and cardiovascular diseases are expected to the be the two prime contributing factors to illnesses worldwide by 2020.

Studies also show that our ability to directly access nature can alleviate feelings of stress. The millions of neural channels in our brain link to the human body’s nervous system. This system is comprised of two networks: the sympathetic and the parasympathetic systems. The sympathetic system stimulates the human body when cognitive function is needed. The parasympathetic system serves to relax the body and is used for internal processes such as digestion. When the body’s natural balance of sympathetic and parasympathetic is achieved, the body is in the ideal state of homeostasis.

But in chaotic and stressful environments, like a busy office, the body’s sympathetic system is highly engaged in a “fight-or-flight” mindset. Concurrently, the parasympathetic system is suppressed, disrupting our natural balance and resulting in energy drain and mental fatigue. This combination induces stress, frustration, irritability and distraction. In contrast, human interaction with nature provides an increase in sympathetic activity. This results in decreased stress and irritability and the increased ability to concentrate.

In Japan Shirin-Yoku (Forest Bathing), the practice of mindfully spending time in the forest, using all of your senses to appreciate nature, has been proven to combat stress, enhance mental wellness and bolster brain health.

 

4. Feel happier and healthier.

Not surprisingly, biophilic elements make us feel in a more positive frame of mind.  Positive people have a positive impact on others, take better care of themselves and are healthier. Another point to consider here is that they are less likely to be off work sick, so if you are still on the fence about adding biophilic elements to your workspace, consider the impact it could have on reducing absenteeism in your office.

 

5. Attract and Retain the best talent.

 Having a thoughtfully designed, attractive workspace, full of natural light and biophilic elements, shows who you are as an organisation.  It also sends a powerful message about your social conscience and green-credibility and that you care about your colleagues.  We spend a large amount of time at work, and whilst we are there, we want it to be a positive experience.

Want to add some biophilic elements to your workspace, retail space or venue? Contact us today.

Biophilic Design in The Workplace – What’s it all about?

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As the design of the workplace evolves through various trends, from cellular office environments to open plan spaces and then the rise of agile working spaces, the rising trend of biophilic design has been hard to ignore.

 

What is Biophilic Design?

Biophilic design is essentially a design framework that intertwines the patterns of nature into the built environment, strengthening the human-nature connection. What makes this work is the effective incorporation of natural elements such as stone, wood, living green walls, water features, and plants into the interior environment.

Apart from the inclusion of natural materials, biophilic design also incorporates the use of natural lighting to help people maintain a natural circadian rhythm, access to fresh air through high quality HVAC systems and an overall design that encourages movement, such as stairs to keep people active and mobile.

 

Why is Biophilic Design so Effective?

When all the features of biophilic design are combined correctly, what is created is a workplace that optimises employee performance, health and wellbeing, helping organisations reach peak physical and mental performance. Through our innate desire to protect and nurture that which feeds us and sustains us physically and emotionally, we instinctively connect with natural features such as plants, fresh air and water.

Whilst this may seem a financial luxury given the pressures on most organisations, economic reasons are actually one of the key drivers for the growing biophilic trend. As organisations become more aware of the value of investing in employee health, wellbeing and performance, the value of creating a workplace which fosters and improves this is seen as a sound economic policy.

 

Why is Biophilic Design Relevant?

Biophilic design is changing the way we work and has been a key feature in workspaces from workplace design pioneers such as GoogleAmazonApple and many others across the world. The focus in creating the best workplaces is also to do with attracting and retaining key talent and these companies realise that by investing in this area, they will be successful in attracting the top workforce and maximising creativity within that workforce.

With the World Health Organisation expecting stress related illness such as mental health disorders and cardiovascular disease to be the two largest contributors to disease by 2020, the onus is on creating spaces where worker wellbeing flourishes. Numerous studies have been shown to demonstrate that by incorporating elements of nature through biophilic design into the workspace, stress levels and ill health absenteeism can be reduced whilst productivity, creativity and wellbeing are improved.

 

How Do We Implement Biophilic Design in Our Workspace?

The best way to implement biophilic design is at the outset of a project. By involving all the key stakeholders in such a project, including employees, facilities managers, finance teams, office design consultants and biophilic experts like Planteria Group, the whole picture can be realised.  Incorporating the spatial and human opportunities that exist enables the organisation to realise a plant display and design that increases performance, wellbeing, creativity and profit.

Planteria Group work closely with Zentura, specialists in office design and fit out, to design biophilia into the perfect space for you creating the ultimate working environment.  You can find out more, take a look at their case studies or obtain a free consultancy session here.

How to Plan the Perfect Christmas

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Christmas may well be the most wonderful, magical time of the year, but it’s not without stress. From buying presents for so many different people, having to wrap each one in beautiful paper (and desperately trying to find an online tutorial for wrapping), to the mad last-second dash to the supermarket the night before to pick up the forgotten cranberry sauce, a lot of time and effort goes into making that perfect Christmas.

With autumn drawing in and thoughts turning to the festive season (you may have noticed advent calendars are already making an appearance), here’s a handy guide to ensure you’re fully prepared and can enjoy the big day with the minimum amount of stress.

Gift Buying

When it comes to present buying, it really is never too early to start. Some people are organised enough that they buy the bulk of their Christmas’s gifts in the January sales for the following Christmas, while others leave it to the very last minute, trying to grab what they can from the rapidly emptying shelves in late December. Ideally, you should start looking for inspiration around the middle of September and begin with drawing up a list of everyone you need to buy for, not forgetting the office Secret Santa.

If you’re a working professional and don’t have the time to go shopping during the week, get online and start browsing some of your favourite online retailers in your lunch break. They will often have recommendations for gifts that may spark some ideas.

If you have children, take them shopping with you at the weekend and take note of where their little eyes wander. Chances are they will drop not-so-subtle hints as you walk past toys and gadgets that take their fancy. Make a note on your phone of all these moments to help compile that Christmas list. Or you could even ask them to send you links online to what they want; kids are so tech savvy these days they might even do a better job of navigating those online shops than you.

One top tip for present gathering is to make a list of what you’ve bought for who as you’re going along – not only does it make things easier come wrapping time, but if you hang onto the list, you know you won’t be at risk of buying someone the same thing again next Christmas.

 

Card Writing

Despite email and instant messaging, many people still want to write, send and receive physical Christmas cards. It’s a lovely tradition that may be one of the only times you contact that distant cousin or that old University friend of yours.

If sending cards is for you, the first thing you need to do is check those all-important postal dates. For 2018, Royal Mail recommends Thursday 20th December for the last 1st class post deliveries, and Tuesday 18th December for 2nd class for domestic UK post.

For international post, the dates vary widely, from dates as early as September all the way to mid-December, depending on the destination. Check the Royal Mail website for a comprehensive list of all countries and prioritise your international letters first. It helps to draw up a list of everyone you’re sending cards to, to avoid missing anyone.

Alternatively, it can be a nice idea to save the money you would have spent on cards and instead donate it to a charity of your choice. A first-class stamp is around 67p, if you were to send out 50 cards, you would end up spending £33.50! Which doesn’t even include the cost of the Christmas cards themselves. Consider a festive email card for people like your work colleagues; they’re just as merry, and you’ll be able to do some real good with the money you save.

Getting Away

Sometimes getting away from the day-to-day planning for Christmas can be a great way to unwind and enjoy some of the festive cheer. If you’ve got the cash to spare and some holiday time to take, German Christmas markets can be a lovely way to get into the Christmas spirit – Nuremberg is famed for its Christmas market, but Berlin and Dresden are also excellent choices.

Copenhagen is another great Christmas destination if you want a winter wonderland, or you could really push the boat out and take a trip to New York to see the incredible show they put on around this time of the year. A mini break is a great chance to escape the office and get some shopping done.

If you are planning a getaway then you need to book well in advance or the fares will skyrocket and availability will go down, so get searching in September or early October to avoid disappointment.

 

Stress-free Cooking

We all put so much pressure on ourselves to make the big Christmas dinner a showstopper. Let’s face it, by the time you’ve panic-bought all that food (and it’s always too much) and slaved away in the kitchen (when you should be having fun), you’re probably in no fit state to enjoy it. Christmas should be about spending time with your family, not getting hot and flustered making bread sauce and your own Yorkshire puddings.

If you’re too busy with work, cut a few corners and take some of the stress out – order online for home delivery, and remember that frozen roast potatoes and cranberry sauce from a jar are just as good. Nobody should be expected to produce a home-made black forest gateau at the drop of a hat. Treat yourself to an upmarket supermarket dessert. The kids aren’t going to notice the food’s not home-made, and if any guests pass comment, then you know not to invite them next year.

Christmas should be a time to relax with family and maybe drink a little more than you should. Take some of the worry out by getting organised early, then you can enjoy the big day and leave the stress to Father Christmas.

Decorations

If your decorations have seen better days, it might be time to invest in some new ones. The major DIY stores will start to display their Christmas stock a good couple of months before the big day, and when it comes to decoration buying, it can be best to do it in person rather than rely on the internet. Sometimes the decorations which look nice online can look cheap and tacky once they arrive.

It’s always nice to have the office decked out at the beginning of December, so decide who on your team will be responsible for stringing up the tinsel. A sparkling tree with some baubles or some festive bunting certainly wouldn’t go amiss, either.

If you’ve got kids, decoration buying is all part of the build-up and fun. It can also be a good excuse to distract them with a little creative crafting, and home-made decorations almost always end up being the most treasured. You can take advantage of all the wonderful ideas and tutorials online to discover something that your children would love to make themselves. You could try getting them to craft tree ornaments from polymer clay, or use old jam jars, glitter and some glycerine to make their very own Christmas snow globes.

Finally, there’s the big one. It’s an age-old dilemma – real or artificial? Each family and each office has their own ‘tree traditions’. Artificial Christmas trees are of a much higher quality than they were even a handful of years ago, so if you can find a nice one, it can be reused for years to come.

For others, Christmas just wouldn’t be Christmas without the smell of fresh pine. The British Christmas Tree Growers Association (yes, that’s a thing) say you can buy your tree from the 1st December onwards and still have it looking lush and healthy throughout the festive season. However, don’t forget to keep it watered every day, to make sure the tree will dazzle beneath those fairy lights for many weeks to come.

At Planteria, we can take the stress out of your Christmas this year by doing all of your Christmas tree arrangements for you. Our complete commercial Christmas tree services have something suitable for any space, from smaller trees for offices, right through to show-stopping centrepieces perfect for hotels, bars and large reception areas. We have a wide range of colours to choose from, real or artificial, undecorated, with lights only or fully decorated if you like. Additional extras include presents under the tree and artificial garlands and wreaths, created in our standard tree colour choices. When the festivities are over, you can even arrange to have us collect your tree after Christmas; it’s all included in our fantastic service.

Get in touch with Planteria today to find out how we can meet your needs this Christmas.

The Business Case for Celebration

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We’ve all been through a lot this year, Brexit, financial instability on the markets, turbulent politics at home and outside the UK. In true British style when the going gets tough the tough find everything they can to celebrate and be positive about.

If this seems a trivial thing, or superfluous to business requirements, it might be time to take a fresh approach and see what benefits can be brought to you by finding opportunities to celebrate.

You only have to look back a short way in history to be inspired by the famous ‘Blitz spirit’ Londoner’s displayed in the second world war, to see that this attitude is a winning formula. When the chips were down and the City was being destroyed around them, Londoner’s pulled together, they soldiered on and they found time to gather together to sing and celebrate small things. We can’t compare our current situation to the adversity of war-time London, but we can take a lesson from their attitude.

You’ve heard the expression ‘work hard and play hard’ this is a key part of building passionate, productive and resilient teams. If you’ve set targets and worked hard to achieve them, taking the time to celebrate is imperative. Recognising and celebrating when you reach your goals, or even smaller goals on the path to the final destination makes the effort worthwhile and reinforces the satisfaction of achievement. Take time out to applaud the efforts of all concerned with a meal, a reward or recognition event.

Here are some really good reasons why you should celebrate your successes:

A happy workplace brings better results for companies and individuals and is cited as a main reason for staff retention.

Celebrating with your team increases bonding and builds teams that work better together.

Celebrating success reminds the team of why you set the goal in the first place and spurs your team on to greater achievements.

Ironically sometimes even celebrating failure can be a key to success. Read how Spotify celebrated an unsuccessful experiment, and how not sweeping the results under the rug, but discussing it openly, created a win.

A great chance is coming your way, Christmas is fast-approaching, so why not plan an up-beat end to the year? Decorate your office, with Christmas Trees, wreaths and garlands. Push the boat out and plan a Christmas Party, Secret Santa draw, or festive drinks? Show your appreciation to your team for their efforts over the year, and use it as a perfect opportunity for some team-building.

With the lines between work and life blurring and the fact that we are often spending more time with our colleagues than our family members it’s important to create a more relaxed, welcoming atmosphere. To quote Virgin entrepreneur Richard Branson “A business has to be involving it has to be fun, and it has to exercise your creative instincts”.

‘Tis the season for goodwill to all men. So let it work for you and give you an excellent reason to end on a high note. Celebrate your collective successes, and spring-board your team into a positive and prosperous New Year.

Trees and decorations – let’s take care of that part for you!

From Tree to You: Christmas Trees to Make Your Business Stand Out

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Christmas is a magical time, and most people will agree that part of the fun, is the build up to it and the decorations everywhere. We enjoy seeing decorations go up in streets, towns and businesses across the country. Twinkling lights and bright colours lift up the gloomiest commute home.

You may have seen beautiful trees in some office receptions, hotels and store windows and thought they look stunning and wondered how, as if by magic, a 20ft tree went up overnight?

Part of the difficulty of getting a Christmas tree for your office or business is actually getting it back to the premises, especially if you are in busy city centre location. Of course, decorating a large tree may involve using a step ladder and takes time and a practiced eye. So, who does this job at your office? Maybe it’s you, and you already have a ‘to-do’ list as long as your arm, as well as everything else that goes on during the holiday festivities? This is the perfect job to outsource to the professionals, and if it isn’t your job, do pass this on right colleague, they’ll thank you for it!

Leave It To Planteria, We’ll Do It All For You

Planteria does the hard work for you, providing a bespoke and professional Christmas Tree service that caters for business needs, practically and professionally. Our service ensures that your Christmas tree is hand-picked, delivered and decorated, with all the fuss associated with these yuletide festivities completely eliminated. This gives you the opportunity to sit back, relax and enjoy the occasion, without running the risk of decorating-related workplace injuries.

Not only that, but with a wide range of colours to choose from you can select the perfect theme for your location, or even match your corporate branding. Simply order your Christmas Tree online, choose, real or artificial, with lights only or fully decorated. You can add wrapped decorative ‘presents’ to complete the finished look, and also add complementing wreaths and garlands.

Select your chosen delivery slot and pay for your tree. Planteria will contact you to confirm your exact delivery in November, and will then deliver and decorate your tree in situ on that date. We will also collect your tree on your pre-selected collection date after Christmas, this is all part of the service and included in the price.

No more attempting to hire a vehicle large enough to transport an enormous tree, all the while unloading and parking in a busy city centre. From your initial order all the way through to post-Christmas collection, we have you completely covered.

The Tale of our Christmas Trees

Our Christmas trees are grown on sustainable UK Christmas tree farms which harvest and replant trees every year. It generally takes about 10 years to grow a Christmas tree from seed to a size ready for cutting. A Christmas tree farm is carbon positive for most of the year as the trees absorb Carbon and emit Oxygen. Once a Christmas Tree has graced your office or venue, it can be recycled, typically sent through a chipper to be used as mulch for parks and green areas.

We start preparing for the holiday season in July and August, with our Tree specialists visiting Christmas tree farms to ‘tag’ the type and size of trees that we want on behalf of our clients, wandering through acres and acres of fields to pick out the perfect trees. The specific need of the client determines the type of tree we select for them: larger trees, which sell out quickly, are often reserved for clients with premises that call for larger statement centrepieces – particularly hotels with spectacular lobbies and organisations with airy atriums.

 

We offer a first come, first served basis for these larger trees, and therefore to avoid disappointment, we suggest that customers looking for a Christmas tree on a ‘grander’ scale – that is, 10 feet or taller – should order as early in the year as possible. These taller trees are sourced from a specialist farm in the South East and are show-stoppers to suit all spaces.

 

Christmas Trees for Busy Companies

When ordering a tree on behalf of your business, chances are that you have chosen a tree that is significantly larger than the standard, domestic tree and decorating it to an acceptably high standard will be incredibly difficult. Remember – this tree will be associated with your business. You need it to look the part.

Our corporate office Christmas trees service is a popular choice for this reason – delivered to a high standard, we are on point as far as colours and trends are concerned. This year, we have introduced two brand-new colour schemes, tapping into current fashion trends with Rose Gold, and a Silver & Gold combination. This is in addition to the classics; Red & Gold, and Blue & Silver, if these combinations aren’t to your taste, we have a eleven colour schemes available, all of which can be mixed and matched to suit your needs.

Want to Find Out More?

If our service sounds like something of interest to you, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us to discuss how we can work together to meet your particular needs. Our professional team are versatile and operate successfully to achieve the look you desire at a cost-effective price, ensuring your vision becomes a reality and your holiday season remains entirely stress-free.

Operation Maximisation

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Operation – Maximisation!

A Facilities Manager may understand the phrase ‘squeezing a quart into a pint pot’ better than anyone else.

With office space, especially in City Centre locations at an all-time high, the careful planning and use of space is high on the agenda. In some areas of London rent per square foot is averaging £96.00.* Decisions about moving are not taken lightly and in times of growth, fitting more staff into your building can be like doing a 2000 piece jigsaw puzzle, painstaking and complicated!

Modern-day Facilities Managers should perhaps be called ‘Workplace Managers’ as they now hold a much more holistic role, working closely with other senior colleagues to deliver a service to stakeholders that meet business objectives. It is no longer just about providing a safe, clean, fit-for-purpose environment where everything works well; it is now about providing competitive advantage, creating a strong brand image, employee engagement and retention. It is about corporate responsibility, green infrastructure, well-being and optimal productivity.

It has long been recognised that corporate planting is a key feature for the modern workplace. Whether that means roof terrace space, ‘Green Infrastructure’ to break up the concrete jungle of an inner-city location, or planting solutions for interiors to bring tranquillity and beauty inside. Corporate planting is no longer just a ‘nice to have’, it has become essential. Plants in the work place are proven to decrease stress levels, increase productivity, improve the aesthetic value of the environment, negate ‘sick building syndrome’ improving sickness absence rates, and improve air quality.

What is the answer then? How do you include plants into your office plan when there is no spare floor space?

Creative and innovative plant solutions are available. It’s time to think outside the proverbial box. Living walls bring a room to life and look stunning inside or out. Whole walls can be planted in striking colours and patterns, echoing your design theme or corporate logo.

On a smaller scale, plants become art inside the office. Don’t hang static two dimensional pictures, instead hang living pictures, elegant frames full of lush green planting. Living pictures can be used anywhere to add the wow factor and transform a boring office wall.

If you’re a Facilities Manager, I expect you know the location of every fire extinguisher in your building. Do your staff know where these are too? How about a planted fire-extinguisher stand as the perfect multi-tasking furniture. It’s completely functional and it also makes an attractive office feature. One would argue that it makes the office safer as everyone will take note of the location of your firefighting equipment!

We are all striving to be paper free, keeping the office uncluttered, but there will always be a need for storage in the office. Stationery supplies, documents and personal belongings must have a home. Sometimes cabinets can provide structure to an open plan office, sectioning off areas so teams can work in defined spaces. Cabinets can multi-task too. Cabinet top planting can be used effectively to soften clinical open plan offices, bringing lush colour and life in to an otherwise bland space with the added benefit that it stops the clutter of left-over snow-drifts of paper from the printer and abandoned coffee cups.

Looking for something completely different? Upside-down planters give a totally different perspective. Hanging from the ceiling, they take up no extra space but they do add a fun, fresh, modern look to your décor. Working well over desk space, or to accent your communal areas, perhaps over the breakfast bar or dining tables.

Now is the time to explore the myriad of possibilities and be open-minded about trying out some exciting new solutions in planting to improve your building. There’s so much choice it’s just a case of finding what works best for you.

Information source http://www.uncsbrp.org/officespace.htm – London’s Economic Plan.

 

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10 Tips for Workplace Wellness

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Employee Wellbeing

How do you measure the happiness and wellbeing of your employees? Do you know how your staff are really feeling when they’re in the office and how they feel after leaving work?

In today’s fast-paced, technology-fueled, budget-conscious offices it’s no wonder that employees are feeling the stresses and pressures of our modern workplace more than ever before. That’s why as a business you value your employees as your most important assets and treat them accordingly. After all, a happy workplace is a productive and successful workplace and your investment in your employee’s wellbeing will reap rewards for everyone.

Boosting happiness, morale and productivity in the workplace can be easy, fun, and you don’t need to spend a huge amount of money to make some simple changes with a big impact. We’ve chosen 10 of our favourite suggestions below to help you create a modern workplace with perks that staff will enjoy.

10 Tips to Improve Workplace Wellness & Employee Wellbeing:

1) Provide healthy snacks and drinks in the office and encourage employees to eat their lunch in a communal area or outdoors rather than sitting at their desk.

Healthy snacks are far better than sugar-fueled nibbles which can often lead to employees feeling sluggish and less productive in the afternoon, so be sure to have a few healthy snacks on hand, such as fruit. Similarly, lunch breaks are important and even 20 minutes away from the computer screen will refresh tired eyes and increase productivity for the rest of the day.

2) Encourage employees to be active during the work-week. You might consider offering a weekly lunchtime yoga class or free gym memberships, giving employee incentives to focus on physical fitness and the impact this has to overall health and wellbeing.

Other ideas include promoting the cycle-to-work scheme and offering assistance with public transport or parking costs if your business is located in a larger city, to offset any costs your staff may wish to spend on fitness.

3) Make your office interior greener with plants & flowers. Biophilia is gaining popularity in the workplace because we as humans have a strong need to align ourselves with nature (learn more about biophilia in our blog post ‘Biophilia – What is it and Why is it Important?‘).

Studies have shown that plants in the workplace increase productivity, reduce stress and provide cleaner air, among other things.  From as little as £2.50 per week for a floor-standing potted plant, Planteria Group can offer planting & floristry services for your business which includes regular maintenance.  For examples of our recent work see our projects and also our case studies.

4) De-clutter your workspace and brighten your interior with a fresh coat of paint and some clever organisation. A bright and airy office will improve productivity and general well-being.

We know too well that flat surfaces often get covered with paperwork, office supplies and other random items, so consider using planters on top of shelving to give a tidier appearance. We love storage solutions which also double as interior planters (as seen in this example), and did you know we also offer attractive storage solutions for fire extinguishers which double as planting containers?

5) Provide in-office health checks and regular health screenings with a mobile doctor to promote healthy living. Consider offering this once a year.

6) Offer flexible working practices if possible, which include working from home to promote a healthy work/life balance. Promote a positive focus on family and friends and encourage your employees to use their holiday entitlement to avoid a culture of ‘presenteeism’.

Try to limit your work-related communication to office hours and to help reduce the likelihood of anxiety associated with being tied to technology 24/7.

7) Offer training programmes or workshops for employees to learn new skills or brush up on advances in technology related to their job. This maintains employee expertise and can improve productivity. This gesture also shows your employees that you value them as individuals and are  committed to excellence.

8) Promote charity fundraising and volunteer work in the community. For example, Planteria Group invite employees to vote on a chosen charity each quarter and work together as a team to raise money through bake sales, sports tournaments, raffles and more. You could also consider a team-building day out of the office where you all volunteer your working hours to support a chosen charity.

9) Create a chill-out zone free from technology. This space should be comfortable, clutter free and inviting. Encourage employees to take a 15 minute break and relax with music, a book or magazine or even a quick snooze.

10) Offer monthly massage treatments for staff by bringing in a mobile therapist. Depending on budget you could either cover the whole cost or arrange for staff to book and pay a small fee. Find companies offering this service near you with a search on Google for “office massage London” or “local massage therapists”.

Set aside some space in an unused meeting room for the therapist to set up a private mini-treatment room for the day. A focus on neck, shoulders and back will reduce stress and leave employees feeling refreshed and well looked after.

 

Above are just some of the many ways you can help improve employee wellbeing at work. Your employees will agree that these types of perks are very much appreciated and you may even consider asking for their input on other ideas that are meaningful for them.

Promoting wellness in the workplace is crucial in today’s world more than ever before. Our hope is that we’ve given you some unique suggestions for building a strong and supported working environment, benefitting employees and businesses alike.

If you’d like further suggestions, ideas or a free quote on how Planteria Group can help support wellbeing with plants and flowers for your business please contact us.

 

NHS Health At Work Recommendations:

According to a recent report published by NHS Health at Work on healthy workplaces, health and wellbeing are defined as follows:

Health relates to a person’s physical and mental condition. Wellbeing is the subjective state of being healthy, happy, contented, comfortable and satisfied with one’s quality of life. Mental wellbeing relates to a person’s emotional and psychological wellbeing. This includes self-esteem and the ability to socialise and cope in the face of adversity. It also includes being able to develop potential, work productively and creatively, build strong and positive relationships with others and contribute to the community.

You can view the full 20-page report here.

Other more traditional suggestions made in the NHS report (NICE’s guideline on workplace health) for supporting employee health and wellbeing include:

  • offering employees help and encouragement to build supportive relationships
  • being open and approachable to ensure employees feel free to share ideas
  • consulting regularly on daily procedures and problems
  • recognising and praising good performance
  • identifying and addressing issues and concerns and taking any action needed as soon as possible to prevent problems escalating
  • identifying sources of internal and external support
  • agreeing relevant and realistic job targets
  • carrying out stress risk assessments and developing workplace solutions to reduce this.

Sources:

Health at Work
NICE’s guideline on workplace health: management practices, recommendations 1.8.1, 1.8.2 and 1.9.1

Moss Walls: Q & A

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Greenery is much sought-after in today’s workplaces and within the hospitality industry, not only because it enhances a space visually, but it also has positive effects on health & wellbeing.

There are numerous studies about boosting mental wellbeing, increasing productivity & creativity and for those in the Hospitality industry a new report indicates that having more greenery in reception areas can increase the amount of time spent in these areas, translating to more revenue generated for your business (Human Spaces Biophilic Design In Hospitality report).

There are several benefits to choosing a moss wall in your workspace, including the fact that they are completely maintenance-free.  Working within facilities management, business & hospitality sectors, we can offer bespoke moss walls with your company logo or corporate colours and we can help you achieve the look you’re after, even in the smallest of spaces.

Moss Walls are in high-demand, and we’ve asked our resident moss wall experts some questions to help explain what they are, how to look after them and more.

 

Q:   What is the difference between a moss wall and a living wall?

A:   Living Walls are made up from live plants planted in modular compartments and require regular maintenance, with an irrigation system is built into the wall. Moss Walls are made from moss that has been preserved, so it won’t grow anymore, and it won’t decompose.

 

Q: How is the moss preserved?

A: This is like asking a chef for a recipe!  The moss is usually preserved with glycerine.  The moss is then washed though using food grade type colourants, so not to be harmful in anyway, and to ensure the colour stays vibrant.

 

Q:   Do moss walls require water & light?

A:   No, Moss Walls can go anywhere internally and no water or light is required.  This is one of the benefits of choosing a moss wall.

 

Q: What level of maintenance is required for a moss wall?

A: No maintenance at all is required for Moss Walls other than a spot of dusting every now and then. (we recommend a feather duster)

 

Q:  How long does a moss wall last?

A:  Moss walls are long lasting installations and will need the least care and repair if they are in lower traffic areas where they won’t get touched or bumped into.

 

Q:    What are my choices for a moss wall? Are there different types and colours of moss?  

A:  The moss we use is available in 16 different colours, and we can create client logos or other patterns in the walls if desired (as seen in the photo above).

 

Q: Where can it be installed, is it suited to some environments more than others?

A: Moss can be installed in any interior location, for aesthetic enhancement and/or for sound absorption.  They are not recommended for exterior use

 

Q:   What are the benefits of a moss wall?  

A: Moss walls can help with noise reduction, they require minimal maintenance, they add greenery and a biophilic design element, help increase productivity & creativity, adds a feel-good factor to those in the space, promotes calmness and wellness and much more.

 

Do you have other questions not listed here?  If so, let us know so that we can answer them for you.

Request your FREE quote for a moss wall today: https://www.planteriagroup.com/free-quote/

The Best Plants for Your Office Environment

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In our office, if you want to take a break, there is no better way to re-charge your batteries and stretch your legs than with a couple of laps around our greenhouse. Filled with lush plants in every hue – from the broad glossy leaves of a Croton Petra, dappled with gold and red, to the soft fronds of bright green palms – there are so many varieties in every imaginable shape and size.

Run by Martin Collins and Robert Gilder, our greenhouse covers approximately 5,500 square feet and gives us the perfect conditions for housing our carefully managed stock.

When we visit a new client, we discuss their ideas, colour preferences and corporate branding. We then suggest the best varieties of plant to enhance their interior décor; working with the lighting conditions and heat levels of a building is paramount. Particularly sunny offices will need very different plants to dark offices, and we need to ensure both kinds will thrive. When we are happy that we’ve got it just right, we will order our plants in from specialist growers to arrive in time for installation.

Having our fantastic greenhouse means we have plenty of space and the perfect environment to plant-up our new installations, in-house rather an on-site. With this approach the Plants are already beginning to become established in their planters or containers before they are delivered to the client. It’s also safer and more stable for the plants to be transported in this manner.

Our plant technicians will continue to care for our clients’ plants, even after they have been installed; their tasks may involve cleaning, feeding, cutting-back and sometimes replacing plants. In this case, a technician will use their smart phone to alert the service team and order a new plant. The plant is then placed in the technician’s own individual bay in our greenhouse, ready for the next visit to the client.

One of the biggest benefits of our greenhouse is the variety of office plants that we’re able to keep in stock. Our wide selection of plants ensures that we can respond quickly to problems, guaranteeing that our clients always have perfect plants in their offices and receptions.

Here’s a small selection of the office plants we keep in our greenhouse:

Ficus Benjamina – commonly known as weeping fig, benjamin fig or Ficus tree
Howea Forsteriana – commonly known as Kentia palm
Dracaena Janet Craig – commonly known as dragon tree
Dracaena Marginata – commonly known as Madagascar dragon tree
Yucca – specifically perennial shrubs and trees, often confused with root vegetables by the same name
Agloenema – commonly known as Chinese evergreens
Sanseviera – Common names include mother-in-law’s tongue, devil’s tongue, jinn’s tongue, bow string hemp, snake plant and snake tongue
Guzmania – commonly known as tufted airplant
Plus a wide variety of indoor orchids

Along with our greenhouse at our Henham HQ, we also have polytunnels for storing exterior planting, such as the popular Buxus and seasonal bedding plants, plus a floristry workshop which is approximately 2000 square feet and specialist cold-stores to ensure optimal storage for fresh flowers.

So, as you can see, we’re fully equipped to store and maintain the very best plants for your office environment. If you’d like us to create some beautiful interior planting for you, give us a call. We love what we do and would love to help you.

Lunch and Learn

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Want to have a fully engaged workforce that understands your whole business? Lunch and Learn sessions are a perfect place to start. Create a culture of continual learning and ideas sharing, and help different teams socialise and get to know each other better.

Lunch and Learns foster growth, team building and presentation skills within the business, whilst making the most of your employees time at work. The Lunch and Learn concept is one that the most successful businesses implement, and here we tell you more about the benefits, how to run your own and some mistakes to avoid.

What Is a Lunch and Learn

A lunch and learn is the coming together of two fantastic concepts and this is usually represented by some kind of presentation or activity happening during the lunch hour. This presentation is usually provided by one of your employees or is sometimes given by an outside speaker. The depth of the presentation will depend on the typical length of your lunches, but you could always consider a longer lunchtime on those days for a more leisurely or in-depth experience.

A lunch and learn should be easy for all to attend, hold them in-house if you can, in your board room or wherever you can comfortably gather your staff and where they can see and hear the speaker clearly. Ideally with access to a screen to view the presentation.

Offer lunch, this is a big draw for many staff. A finger buffet or sandwich platter or something more exciting. This gives staff a chance to get away from their desks and have a change of scenery. Many people work through lunch or skip it entirely and this is not good for their health or their productivity levels. So setting new practices like a lunch and learn will break up the day and help to reinvigorate your employees.

Key Benefits

A lunch and learn allows your staff to develop a wider knowledge of your business or industry. It can be used to develop thinking around new technologies available in your sector, or hear from suppliers about new products and how they could add value to your offering. The lunch and learn is also a great opportunity to grow in-depth knowledge of your internal functions, bringing together disparate teams and forming bonds between workers which will encourage your employees to appreciate the business as a whole, as opposed to only ever seeing their own small part.

CPD stands for Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and is the term used to describe the learning activities professionals engage in to develop and enhance their abilities. It enables learning to become conscious and proactive, rather than passive and reactive. There are over 1000 Institutes and Professional bodies across the UK and the number is growing, many of your staff may already be members of some of these. Engaging in Continuing Professional Development ensures that both academic and practical qualifications do not become out-dated or obsolete; allowing individuals to continually ‘upskill’ or ‘re-skill’ themselves, regardless of occupation, age or educational level. Typically, continued professional development can take many forms includingonline courses, reading white papers, attending seminars and industry-specific presentations. With this in mind, you can find out what your own staff requirements are and help them by delivering suitable lunchtime learning sessions.

Here are some more specific advantages gained by conducting lunch and learns:

Connect with Quieter Teams

It’s a fact of any business – some teams are simply quieter than others. This might be because their line of work is more likely to attract introverts, or it could be that the employees just aren’t so high profile.

Having a member from the quiet team present at a lunch and learn can illuminate their team’s work habits and purpose. Dissolving the air of mystery that inevitably shrouds some employees is an important part of creating a cohesive workforce that respects and understands every individual.

All for One and One for All

Although explaining the purpose of quiet teams is especially important, giving everyone the chance to explain their line of work can be illuminating. Lunch and learns are opportunities for different teams to advertise the skills they have learned to one another, which can encourage employees to develop a more thorough understanding of the business and to work more closely on projects, especially useful in larger matrix structured organisations. This also encourages internal development and agility, for staff to move to new roles within your company.

 

Setting Up Your Lunch

The key to a good lunch and learn is organisation. You need to know what, where, who and when, as well as having a clear plan of what you want to achieve with each presentation, including an overarching goal. These business-wide aims will include making more friendships between co-workers of different teams and connecting workers. You can achieve these aims by crafting an exciting and thoughtfully organised lunch and learn programme through the following tips and tricks.

Catering Staff or Local Lunch

You can’t host a lunch and learn without the lunch, so firstly you need to decide where you will be dining. Go for a simple option of food that can be eaten without too much mess, noise or smell. Make sure it’s tasty and you’ll have staff coming back for more.

Whether you go local or for catering will depend on the size of your establishment, cost and the needs of your staff. Don’t forget to cater for all needs, check on dietary requirements in advance. The lunch is often the biggest attraction at these events, but you also need to consider organisation and communication.

Organised Times, Organised Staff

You need to be consistent with when your lunches are organised if you want your staff to appreciate them. Consistency will ensure that your staff recognise when a lunch and learn is upcoming so that they can organise themselves and their schedules around it.

For example, those staff members who use three out of five of their lunches each week completing personal activities – going to the gym, running errands, meeting with friends – will hopefully remember to keep lunch and learns free, if it happens on a regular date.

Communication and Encouragement

Not everyone will appreciate lunch and learns at first. Indeed, some will undoubtedly view this exercise as a corporate scam created to squeeze more working hours into the day. You need to avoid this by making lunch and learns an activity that staff actively want to be a part of, not something they are forced to attend.

You want your staff to leave these meetings extolling the virtues of a good lunch and learn, talking about the good food they had, the things they have learned and the people they spoke with. You might need to give some encouragement at first, but if you’re hosting them right, then the staff should be encouraging each other.

Things to Avoid

There are some problems that Lunch and Learn hosts can run into, which can sometimes only be seen with hindsight. We’ve listed them so that you can skip the experimental period and get it right from your very first attempt:

Employee Resistance

Some workers view their lunch break as one of the most important parts of the working day. It’s a time to unwind, relax, and let go of any morning troubles so they can approach the afternoon with a fresh outlook.

It is important therefore not to force attendance to these events because it could lead to tension in your workforce. Sell in the benefits and make the topics interesting and varied. Once your staff see that this is a regular event and hear positive feedback they will be keen to take part.

Dull Presentations

A boring presentation will impress no one. Remember that these occasions are happening on workers’ free time, so put fun before facts. You can spice things up by inviting a speaker from another organisation to present, or simply by ensuring that topics are both varied and useful.

At Planteria we are passionate about what we do and why we do it. To add value to the companies we work with, we offer a presentation to enrich your understanding of biophilic design and planting in the workplace. Get in touch to arrange for us to come and talk to your team.

With the growing realisation of the importance that plants and biophilia play in the workplace and their effect on wellbeing, creativity and productivity they have become an essential element in any commercial environment. We work with you to blend our knowledge and design flair to specify the right kind of plants to thrive in a particular space. These presentations are popular with Design and Fit Out companies, Architects and also with Property Management companies and at Tenant Meetings.

Read more about what makes us different.

Lunch and learns aren’t the only option available to you if you are looking to improve relationships between staff; we also recommend improving office environments with office plants, planning social activities outside of work and offering staff perks.

 

 

World Pet Day – Put Pets in Your Office?

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Biophilia is all about our connection to the natural world, but does that connection extend to our four-legged friends that we might find snoozing between the  office plants at work? In celebration of World Pet Day on April 11th, we’re using this space to talk about those pets which are currently bringing peace to office environments across the world. We will be considering whether office pets could be part of the move towards biophilia, how they benefit your workers, and which are best for the office.

Are Office Pets Part of Biophilic Design?

To answer this question, we first need to understand what is meant by biophilic design. We have already written plenty of blogs discussing the topic, such as Biophilic Design in The Workplace – What’s it all about? and Biophilia – What is it and why is it important?, but we’ll sum it up for you again here with a quote from biologist E. O. Wilson:

“Biophilia is an innate and genetically determined affinity of human beings with the natural world.” – The Biophilia Hypothesis, 1984

Biophilic design, therefore, is an environment which works towards satisfying human urges to be amongst natural elements, therefore providing powerful relief during moments of tension and high stress by being amongst plants and wildlife. There have been plenty of studies since The Biophilia Hypothesis which can scientifically support Wilson’s claims such as Dr Knight’s study; lean offices decorated with indoor office plants can increase productivity by 15%.

Following the fact that office flowers and plants have been shown to have useful effects in the office, our next question is whether adding an office pet to your already biophilic office would have any benefits for your staff’s well-being.

Following the fact that office flowers and plants have been shown to have useful effects in the office, our next question is whether adding an office pet to your already biophilic office would have any benefits for your staff’s well-being.

Considering that biophilia is a human connection to the natural world, it would make sense that animals would have similar benefits to plant life in the office since it’s all biophilia. On the other hand, it is easier to find plants that won’t incur allergies amongst your staff, or worse – scare them.

How Can Pets Benefit Your Workers?

Pets can benefit your office in several ways, but one of the most useful is that they act as a social lubricant. Having an office dog or cat is an easy way into conversation and can really benefit those employees who work hard but struggle to hold a conversation with their co-workers. An office pet bridges that gap by functioning as a shared hobby that can be applied across the office.

Pets are also known to reduce stress, a 2001 study found that patients with pets were better able to keep their blood pressure levels low than those without pets. This could be especially useful in an office environment where stressful situations may occur quite frequently. Alternatively, having pets present could mean that your staff will successfully handle greater responsibilities because the office pet will help with any accompanying stress.

Why Are Office Pets Gaining Popularity?

Google’s official code of conduct states that ‘affection for our canine friends is an integral facet of our corporate culture’, and they’re not alone – Amazon’s headquarters have around 2,000 pets registered to appear whenever employees wish to bring their pet to work. Even Forbes have allowed pets into their offices and have reported that ‘the atmosphere is warmer and more sociable’. Smaller companies are likely following their lead, causing a rise in office pets around the world.

Which Pets Are Best for an Office?

It depends on your office; a dog might be well loved by most, but perhaps most of your workforce would prefer a sociable cat. Alternatively, an aquarium requires far less maintenance but also has far fewer of the advantages that four-legged furry creatures can provide. For example, you don’t receive the same comfort from petting a fish, and they are far less likely to be a talking point in the office. Also, your staff will never be inclined to take the fish outside for a refresher (hopefully), which is an activity that could be very beneficial for staff.

Many offices suffer from sick building syndrome, as explained in our blog about poor Indoor Air Quality: Facts & How To Improve. Essentially, illness caused by poor ventilation in your office could be solved by improving your ventilation, introducing indoor plants to reduce dust and particulate matter, and encouraging your staff to take their breaks outside to stock up on a little fresh air which will help them to stay alert.

Keeping an office cat or dog will necessitate staff trips to let the dog or cat out which can provide health benefits for staff, as well as relief for the animal. On the other hand, a trip to the outdoors can seem a bit of chore in the rain – which is when indoor plant alternatives really shine for improving office health. Rain or shine, indoor office plants will always be there to boost creativity, productivity and health in your office – and you won’t need to drag them outside for a bathroom trip in poor winter weather.

To conclude, a lot of offices across the world are finding positives in bringing their pets to work, but if you’re not ready to commit to bringing the animal kingdom into your office – and sorting through the insurance policies that they might interfere with – then you can reap the same benefits that they bring by redesigning your office to incorporate more plant life.

Alternatively, if you’re already enjoying life with an office pet and want to further improve your office to suit staff and animals alike, we’re sure that bringing more plants into your office will bring joy to everyone.

Bring and Share Christmas Food!

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Christmas and New Year’s festivities are a must for offices across the country – the chance to create some merriment and festivity in the, normally corporate workspace, with decoration and celebration is important for the wellbeing of many workers, not ignoring the fact that it’s also a lot of fun! A great way to celebrate it is with a bring and share – an event that encourages everyone to contribute together to make some delicious treats for all to enjoy!

Raise Morale and Celebrate with Some Delicious Treats

Not every company wants to host a Christmas party, and this could be for a variety of reasons, but that doesn’t mean that you should forgo celebrations altogether. There is plenty that you can do within working hours to raise staff morale without impinging on their own commitments. Hosting a bring and share is a perfect example of how you can satisfy staff desires to celebrate Christmas or the new year without cutting into their personal time. The event could also be used as a charity fund raiser giving an extra incentive for everyone in the office to get involved, either in baking or sampling the food, on a day set with more of a relaxed atmosphere and a little more socialising.

It’s also a great idea to reward those individuals who are striving to keep the business running over the Christmas period.

Inspiration for a Brilliant Office Bring & Share

Firstly, if you are going to be getting into the Christmas spirit in your office, then we fully recommend investing in a Christmas tree to get everyone in the festive mood.

The Planteria New Business Team will be enjoying a thoroughly Christmassy celebration this year, complete with decorated tree and plenty of food contributions from our colleagues. We’ve collected a selection of our tried and tested favourite Christmassy contributions for a bring and share, to inspire you:

We’re bringing more than just food to the table; we’re also looking forward to engaging in a few Christmas activities, such as wreath making whilst listening to some classic Christmas songs.

Tips for Making Your Own Cheese Scones

Cheese scones are a classic twist on your favourite plate of afternoon tea, and they are incredibly easy to make too! All you need to do is add some cheese to your classic scone recipe, perhaps with a pinch of pepper and salt added to ensure that your scones are a truly savoury sensation. Other recommendations include adding spring onions and chives to the cheesy topping to add a little heat and variation in colour too. If you are concerned about your scones looking a little pale, then choose a darker cheese such as a red Leicester to make them stand out as perfectly scrumptious.

These taste especially exquisite when paired with some roasted or sundried tomatoes, but it can be quite easy to accidentally fill up on these treats before you have had the opportunity to try the rest of the dishes on the table.

If you want a go at replicating some of the Planteria team’s favourite dishes, here are some recipes for you to use as guidance! Good luck!

Cheese Scones

Christmas Tree Gingerbread

Marzipan Mince Pies

Malteser Tiffin

Mary Berry’s Christmas Cake

Sausage Rolls

Ready for Christmas

If you’re thinking about Christmas already, then you should know that you’re on the right track for enjoying a spectacular and super-organised Christmas period. We understand that there is plenty to do and think about, so let us handle your  Office Christmas Tree preparations. Order now with our configurator to ensure that you receive the perfect tree this December.

A Planteria Christmas Tree

Christmas Infographic! Corporate Party Planning

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Planning the perfect corporate Christmas party can be extremely gratifying, but we also recognise that any business get-together comes with its trials and tribulations. Fortunately, we understand the importance of a professional party and are here to offer our assistance with a beautiful new infographic:

Corporate Christmas Party Infographic

As can be expected, British offices vary in how they celebrate the festive period, so we’ve gathered some facts for you to enjoy here:

86% of organisations will host a Christmas Party!
70% of organisations offer flexible hours during the festive period
55% of employers give their staff gifts
60% of employers don’t ask their teams how they want to celebrate!
51% of organisations share end-of-year results
Above facts sourced from  Perkbox.

Of the offices that do host Christmas parties…

25% are expecting an all-expenses paid for occasion
14% will have their event subsidised
15% will receive a Christmas bonus
10% will receive a gift
28% thought their employer could do more for the company at Christmas
Above facts sourced from  Onrec.

Also, did you know that Birmingham has the highest Christmas party expenditures per employee on average? A total of £37.06 per employee, compared to Exeter’s £8.76 at the bottom of the table, although other studies place London at the height of Christmas spending, so it all depends who you ask.

In the end, though, it all totals to around £1bn spent nationally by businesses celebrating the festive season.

We hope our infographic has helped you to plan an amazing Christmas this year, but don’t forget to order your  Office Christmas Tree  with us soon!

The Top 5 Plants for Your Office

Everyone who has ever worked in an office knows that plants and flowers add to the atmosphere of a workplace. The buzz of background noise can not only be distracting, but can also increase levels of stress – particularly in open-plan offices where space is at a premium. You can reduce noise problems with plants because they absorb sound, making your office quieter and calmer.

Positioning plants in strategic locations around your office will create natural sound barriers. Even if you’re not buying plants for their sound reduction benefits, their potential to improve staff productivity and well-being means that even the smallest tree could work wonders for your office. This was discovered by a research experiment at Texas A&M University, which explored the link between flowers, plants and workplace productivity during an eight-month study.

Those taking part in the study performed creative problem solving tasks in a workplace with plants and flowers, a setting with sculptures, and an environment with no additional planting or decoration at all.

Participants were found to demonstrate more innovative thinking and generate more ideas and original solutions to problems in the office that included plants and flowers. Men who participated in the study generated 15% more ideas, whilst women generated more creative, flexible solutions to problems when plants and flowers were present.

With this in mind, we thought we’d share with you the top 5 office plants requested by our clients.

1.       Sansevieria Fernwood or Sansevieria Mikado

Sansevieria is a genus of about 70 species of flowering plants, native to Africa, Madagascar and southern Asia. Common names include snake plant, mother-in-law’s tongue, devil’s tongue, jinn’s tongue, bow string hemp and snake tongue. These are great air purifiers, making them perfect for offices.

2.       Succulents

These plants have thick and fleshy leaves which are used to retain water in the arid climates where they are native. The word “succulent” comes from the Latin word sucus, meaning juice, or sap. They come in a variety of sizes, colours and shades, which can allow for many beautiful combinations.

3.       Phalaenopsis Orchid

Also known as moth orchids, phalaenopsis is one of the most popular indoor orchids and is native to southern China, Taiwan, the Indian Subcontinent, Southeast Asia, New Guinea, and Queensland. These elegant plants make a real impact on an office environment, and are fairly hard to kill – great for a busy office!

4.       Ficus Ginseng (bonsai)

Ginseng bonsai are also known as ficus retusa, Banyan fig or ficus ginseng. Bonsai art appeared over a millennium ago in the Chinese Empire and was then known as Penzai. It was later adapted by the Japanese and its popularity spread all across South-East Asia. These are probably the most famous and easily recognised bonsai trees and are easy to care for.

5.       Dracaena Lemon & Lime (branched)

Native throughout Africa and also known as ‘Dragon Tree Lemon and Lime’, their brightly coloured leaves are a sight for sore eyes in a dreary office on a Monday morning. These plants can get quite tall; we recommend placing one or two around the corners of your office so that they are visible without taking up too much room. 

Think of your interior designs as investments in your staff – you’ll start to see some returns when their productivity increases. Improving the atmosphere of your office has never been easier, there are so many varieties and styles of planting available.  So if you like the look of these ever popular favourites, you’re looking for something different, or you have haven’t a clue where to start, contact us contact us today and we’ll help you pick out the perfect plants for you.