Nature lesson 2: Craft Your Work Environment

My friend has ambitions of turning his grassy backyard into a vegetable garden.
But if I remember rightly, it’s been a couple of years now. It turns out that just having the best seeds isn’t all it takes to grow a garden.

The soil has to be fertile or made fertile. It could be that we have a clay soil. There is a whole way of handling that.

But what’s true of our seeds is true of us too. We can crank out a lot of work, plant the best seed but if our work environment is not conducive, the results will be hindered.

We can obsess on the specifics of our work and tweak them for optimised results. But there are 3  crucial areas that should not escape our attention.

Our workspace.

This is a shock for me, but research shows a messy desk doesn’t hamper productivity. In fact, it may well encourage creativity.

We just seem to have a bias towards neatness as a society.  Experiment and do what works for you.

If you prefer mess but are in a traditional office, just tidy up at the end of the day but let it all hang out during. ūüėČ

Our workplace.

Again it may surprise you that research makes a strong case against open plan offices. Instead of being the oasis of collaboration and open communication they were meant to create, they foster distractions, interruptions, and stress. A balance between open, meeting space and private or focus rooms seems a better compromise. Companies like Microsoft are spearheading the move towards such adapted solutions.

Dave Coplin goes deeper into how we should re-imagine our workplaces below.

Our work culture.

We are living in the digital age but holding on to industrial age ideas. We still behave as though work is still a series of steps on an assembly line, highly repetitive and easily manageable. But work is much more complex nowadays.

On an assembly line, purely monetary rewards will enhance performance. But this doesn’t work in most other areas. In fact, research shows that large rewards offered for higher performance¬†can have the opposite effect.

We are driven by other things than just money. According to Dan Pink, we strive for autonomy, mastery, and purpose.

Here’s a bit more from him on the subject

Entrepreneurs have a privileged position, they can effect this change in our organisations rather than follow the antiquated norm.

But we should all push to at least experiment with these.

Reflect, Redefine, Rise!

R.

Rudiano
Multilingual, multi-passionate dilletante in a search for a simple and elegant yet meaningful lifestyle
Posts created 48

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