As a result of a rigorous COVID vaccination campaign, more offices are opening their doors to employees, ensuring the traditional workspace emerges as the foundation of company success.
Now that employees are likely to blend time at the office with remote work, employers should make every effort to ensure the environment is inspiring; stimulating creativity, and improving mental acuity.
Feng Shui – an ancient Chinese philosophy intended to link people to their environments – is one way to build a workspace that assists in cultivating success, collaboration, and well-being for your employees.
How Feng Shui Works
To better understand our suggestions on implementing Feng Shui in your office, having knowledge of Feng Shui’s primary principles is crucial. Feng Shui relies on five elements that represent different areas in life. These elements include Wood, Fire, Earth, Water, and Metal and are represented on a conceptual heat map referred to as a Bagua. When assessing your office to achieve Feng Shui, a Feng Shui master will overlay the Bagua with your office design to determine where and how you should implement each of the five elements. These elements – known as Wu Xing – are rooted in enhancing vitality and promoting growth – something every office needs.
Feng Shui Elements To Implement In Your Office
The year-long pandemic is finally coming to an end – and with more employees returning to work – Feng Shui encourages much-needed workplace wellness. This workplace wellness is critical to enticing employees back to work. By creating a healing environment, something you can do with Feng Shui, your team will feel confident returning to work. These design elements also make transitioning from remote work to in-office work seamless, as Feng Shui creates an appealing atmosphere.
The suggestions we’ve listed focus on making the workplace a refreshing environment and are easy to implement in any workspace.
Improve The Entryway
Start at the beginning of the journey into your office – the entryway.
In Feng Shui, the entryway is one of the most important aspects as it allows energy to flow in and out of your office. The underlying principle is that if you have good Qi – a term for energy flow – you’re inviting opportunity to your office.
Beyond Feng Shui enhancing the entryway works in a practical sense too. Your entryway is the first area guests and employees encounter. Making it an inviting and open space means you’re able to set the tone for interactions in the boardroom and general workday for employees.
To develop good Qi, make the space welcoming. The area should be well-lit and provide a modicum of privacy for workers beyond the reception area. Spacious seating and use of Feng Shui-inspired colors – like red – can help accomplish this. Additionally, ensure your receptionist can see everyone entering the office, allowing her to welcome them and direct their next move.
Use Plants To Promote Growth
Plants symbolize growth and form part of the Wood element in Feng Shui. In Feng Shui, plants contribute to life-affirming, bright, and healing energy.
Plants that contribute the most to this energy are living plants. From a scientific point of view, living plants have been proven to improve mental wellbeing. While the color green is also associated with calmness, happiness, comfort, peace, hope, and excitement.
However, for offices that cannot use living plants – due to a lack of direct light – using superior quality artificial plants will get the job done.
Incorporate Inspired Nooks
In the Bagua, the center of the office is surrounded by eight areas relating to a specific element. One of these areas is the Wealth corner. This corner is meant to invite prosperity and success into the space. To determine where the wealth corner should be, you can stand at the entryway of your office and imagine a 3×3 grid. The corner on the far left should be the wealth corner. The relationship corner – an area meant to build relationships, including business partnerships – should be on the far right.
Once you know where to place these nooks, you can add design elements to activate them.
To activate the relationship corner, you should place a component associated with the earth element, like a stone sculpture or stone furniture, or incorporate the red in the space.
For the wealth corner, adding pieces related to the Wood element will do. A living plant should help you activate this area.
Establish A Commanding Position
As a foundational concept of Feng Shui, the commanding position is the placement of desks to ensure someone sees the most extensive expanse of the space. In the office, this commanding position will be split into two parts: employees’ desks and the office of the most senior member in the company or branch (either a senior manager or the CEO).
For team-member desks, the placement of the desk should allow for as close to 360 views of the office. In open-plan office layouts, this can mean positioning the desk around a central point. In cubicles, employees should be able to see as someone approaches their desk. You can implement this by using transparent or shallow dividers.
For senior members in the company, the commanding position should coincide with one of the inspired nooks – either the relationship or wealth corner. This position should have the most expansive oversight of the office.
Whether you decide to implement one or all of the aforementioned Feng Shui designs into your office, preparing your office in a way that maximizes wellbeing will be vital to encouraging workers to return to work. Since Feng Shui makes unique use of space, implementing these features can also help employees feel safe in the space.