Holiday decorations are more than fun. They boost team morale by making the workspace cheerful and reminding employees that their bosses care about making their work life comfortable. Plus, it reinforces your image with anyone who comes in contact with your business. So when you hire someone to decorate your business, you’ll want to discuss with them how you will get all these benefits. The team will likely want you to consider the following:
The top of everyone’s list should be safety. No one wants the holidays to turn into a threat to people. The decorating team will want to know where exits are so they can avoid blocking them with decorations. They will also have to know where your fire sprinklers are so that they can avoid blocking or damaging them. On a more legal note, your design will have to comply with OSHA regulations, which includes keeping exits clear and avoiding overloading electrical outlets. One OSHA requirement to keep in mind is about any temporary wiring that you use for decorating: it has to comply with the same rules as permanent wiring, except it must be taken down before 90 days are up.
On your end, you might want to check that your fire extinguishers and other safety equipment are in working order before the team arrives to put up the decorations. You will also need to remember to turn off any illuminated items every night before you go home. Electrical items can catch fire if they are allowed to burn when people aren’t in the building.
Team morale may get a lift from seeing snowflakes in the lobby, but it will plummet if employees have to step over the snowflakes all day in order to do their job. Ultimately, your office is a place where people have to get their work done, and you don’t want to interfere with that. Before your corporate design team shows up, you can do a quick tour of the building to find places that should be avoided. For instance, people often take shortcuts to get from one place to another because it is faster, and putting a Christmas tree in the middle of the shortcut will catch people off-guard. You also want to avoid cluttering necessary work surfaces.
You know your employees, so you know that you have hired many types of people. Some of those people might not celebrate a particular holiday. It’s always a good idea to poll your employees to find out which holidays should be decorated for. That way, your employees know that you respect their history and care about them individually (as opposed to assuming they all celebrate the same way you do.) You can also go the route of avoiding referencing specific holidays: stick with snowflakes and fake snow in the winter, pine cones, and cornucopias in the fall, and daffodils in the spring. It creates the same festive spirit without leaving anyone out.
It is important for another reason to be mindful in your holiday decorations: a lot of the decorations will be in public spaces where your customers will see them. You don’t want to make them uncomfortable.
Consistency With Your Business Image
Your corporate image doesn’t change just because a holiday is approaching, which is great because corporate holiday design is a way to reinforce that image. A tasteful, luxurious holiday design will reassure your customers that you are a respectable, prestigious business. A colorful holiday design will make customers feel like you are a fun, modern business. Want your customers to know that you are in touch with their traditions? Decorate for the same holidays that most of your customers celebrate. Want your customers to associate you with good times? Add a few quirky touches to your holiday design. You will have to work with your decorating team to create the image you want.
With these tips in mind, your corporate holiday design is sure to boost morale and your image.
Employees spend many of their waking hours at work. The office is like a home away from home, so it is important that employees feel like they are at home while they are there. If you have ever worked in a building that boasts furniture representative of a 1980s sitcom or has decor that is discolored, worn, and tattered, then you know it can lower the morale in the office and make people less productive. When employees are proud of their workspace, they are often times more willing to go above and beyond the call of duty, which translates into better productivity all around. Improve office life, motivate your employees and give them a workspace that feels more like a home with these office life altering tricks and techniques:
Update Office Furnishings
Whether your company is large or small, office facelift funds should be worked into every business budget. Presentation is an important part of the package when you are trying to generate new business and keep your current customers coming back for more. A well kept office space conveys professionalism. Employees and clients alike will feel more comfortable negotiating new deals, coming up with the next big concept, and seeing projects through to completion when they have a clean and contemporary space to work in.
The overall image of your company should be conveyed in the furnishings you select for your office space. If you wish to portray a laid-back atmosphere that fosters creativity and allows your employees to think and work freely, go with bold colors and furniture with interesting patterns and shapes. If your business is designed around helping others, choose natural earth tones and portray a look of warmth and compassion.
Get On-Board with Biophilia
Biophilia is a psychological concept that was first used in 1973 by psychoanalyst Erich Fromm who said that humans have an innate need to connect with the natural world around them, and are attracted to things that are considered to be alive and from nature.
It is a concept that is being incorporated more in shopping malls, office buildings, and other public spaces as nature calms the spirit. To engage employees and make them feel more relaxed in the workplace, incorporate landscape art, live plants, natural colors, fish tanks, water fountains, and other earthy elements.
The Little Things Do Matter
Providing simple concessions like a coffee pot and healthy snacks in the break room are little things that matter a great deal to employees. Small gestures of appreciation show employees you care and will help keep them feeling comfortable while they are at work. According to The Balance Small Business, businesses that provide free snacks and drinks to employees are the ones most likely to get the best employees in the job market.
Other gestures of appreciation you can consider to improve life in the office include giving employees gift cards to their favorite retailers for a job well done, providing a relaxing break area that includes comfortable seating, games, a TV, and some live plants for them to look after, and pumping soothing music through the airwaves to promote deep thought and reflection.
Knock Down the Walls
Open office concepts are in and promote conversation and idea sharing in the workplace. An open office concept invites employees to discuss projects and form partnerships among themselves as well as makes their supervisors more accessible to them. When the walls are knocked down, even a small office suite can take on a vast and expansive new life, letting in much more natural light for everyone to enjoy.
When designing your open office concept, remember to keep the cubicles low and try to incorporate more windows and skylights into the construction plans. If your office building needs to have individual offices for key executives to work from, position the offices so that they are in the middle of the building, allowing for lower level employees to have access to prime window seating.
In today’s job market, employees have choices when it comes to where they work, and sometimes the tipping point all comes down to the physical appearance and ambiance of the office space you provide. Give your office a facelift, let nature in, and provide employees with a few small gifts of gratitude, and you will enjoy seeing their smiling faces as they work hard to make the business boom.
Living sculptures take the best of nature and art and combine them into one gorgeous display. Creating these sculptures is a true talent as it requires careful consideration of not just what it will look like upon completion but how it will literally grow and change over time. Living sculpture artists are working with a medium that can be unpredictable and fragile, and their work is a testament to both superb planning and of thoughtful patience.
Because of the nature of this work, some of it is ephemeral, lasting only for a season before it either grows out or is pruned away to become the canvas for another piece entirely. The beauty of natural art is that it, like us, is always changing.
Here are some of the most stunning and impressive examples of living sculptures across the world.
Earth Goddess- Atlanta, GA
Located outside of the Cascades Garden at the Atlanta Botanical Garden, the Earth Goddess certainly lives up to her name. Her eyes closed in serene contemplation as she raises a cupped hand spilling water onto the earth, she embodies the peaceful effects of nature. Many different shades of cascading plants make up this 25-foot display.
Green Animals Topiary Garden- Portsmouth, RI
Topiary features a push and pull between the human sense of order and nature’s tendency to override it. More than 80 pieces make up the Green Animals topiary collection including bears, birds, and abstract shapes. This collection of sculptures has a long history, as it was started under the careful attention of the property’s superintendent back in the early 1900’s. The creators carefully carve the sculptures from yew, English boxwood, and California privet shrubs.
The Circus Trees of Gilroy Gardens- Gilroy, CA
Swedish horticulturist Axel Erlandson used a process called inosculation to shape trees into elaborate designs and patterns, creating dozens of living sculptures out of trees on his property in California in the early 1900’s. While some of his creations were featured by Ripley’s Believe it or Not!, by the time the property was bought in 1964, many of the trees had died. Today, more than two dozen of his creations survive at what is now the Gilroy Gardens. You can see a tree with a trunk woven like a basket that you can look right through. The “Revolving Door” offers a 3D cube in the middle of a tree trunk.
King’s Cross Picnic Display by Anna Garforth
U.K.-based artist Anna Garforth makes graffiti with moss instead of spray paint. She uses natural elements embedded directly into man-made structures to create stunning and beautiful displays. One such example is her installation at King’s Cross Picnic, a commissioned piece for the London Festival of Architecture. With geometric zigzags and diamonds embedded directly into the wall, this piece is both calming and intriguing.
These stunning displays of living sculptures are meaningful reminders of our connection and dependence upon the Earth to sustain us just as we sustain it. Putting this reciprocal relationship into a piece of art is a challenging undertaking with breathtaking results. Some of these sculptures (like Erlandson’s trees) will outlive their creators, taking on new shapes over time. Others are temporary displays. Still, others take on different shapes each season, ensuring that no two visits will ever be the same.
Bringing pieces of living art into our own spaces via living walls of cascading plants, topiary, and sculptures can liven up space, bring us closer to nature, and remind us of our connectedness to the Earth and each other. These powerful pieces speak to us on a deep level.
Stop by the Prudential Center’s Winter Garden in the Huntington Arcade today from 12-2pm as we promote wellness, sustainability and of course, plants! Cityscapes will be one of several companies promoting personal and environmental well being. See you there!
Find out how plants can help you get more out of your employees!
Check out this extremely interesting and informative article, as it explains how Biophilic design can reduce stress, enhance creativity and clarity of thought, improve our well-being and expedite healing.