Not all offices have to be cavernous, echoing places with cold, winding corridors and rows of cubicles. Not now, anyway. The advent of working from home and of sharing office space (especially useful for start-ups) means that many companies start off in smaller premises and sometimes stay there as they grow. Other companies decide to downsize their office to save money, or they sublet part of it and so have to make do with less space. It’s easy when you know how, so here’s the know-how.
Save space by using wall-mounted storage
Using the walls to store, hang and hide things is a great way to save floor and desk space. The life vertical is usually easy to implement, and some buildings really lend themselves to it, especially if there’s lots of funny nooks that are crying out for some shelves or hooks. Wall storage can also look great, too – forget about wonky-looking piles of paper and empty coffee cups – choose colourful and ergonomic storage solutions. There are wraparound shelves for corner spaces, for example, or sliding doors. Think outside the box…
Chuck out the junk
Every office has it – old monitors that’ll never be fixed or used again, empty ring-binders, dried-up coffee makers, tired Christmas decorations… Recycle what you can, take some to charity shops and bin the rest (responsibly, obviously). If you forgot it was there, you probably manage quite well without it and if your office space in Victoria is already quite cosy, you don’t need it around anymore.
Consider going paperless
Not completely, maybe, but certainly reduce the amount of paper you use and store in your office. You can keep most files and records digitally now, so if you get rid of, say, one or two filing cabinets’ worth of paper, you can replace it with a fancy new coffee maker or a contemplation corner. Complete with pot plant.
Lose the desk
A big, imposing desk for the CEO is so 1980s, as is a huge chair. We just don’t work that way anymore and there’s no need for anyone to take up that much space nowadays. Companies need effective interior design in their offices, as well as the sense of collaboration and equality between management levels and staff. There’s also the fact that people aren’t trapped at their workstations anymore, so you should aim for simple, uncluttered and agile, not bulky and oaken.
Décor and lighting
Whatever the size of your office, you need to aim for as much natural light as possible, so take down dusty old blinds and clean the windows. You might even find, if you’re in an older building, that there’s a window that’s been covered over in the past – so press it into service immediately! Natural light makes a place look bigger and it also makes people feel better; if you’re a bit short on this resource for any reason, have a look at daylight simulation lamps, as well as bringing in some pot plants to lend an outdoorsy feel.