When it comes to plants at work, that plant on the windowsill or desk rarely gets acknowledgement. Plants bring more to an office space than some additional flair. An office with plants often does look cleaner and more put-together, but there are more advantages to plants and trees in the workplace than just looks.
Research shows that plants at work can have mental, physical and creative benefits which can lead to better productivity, focus and office morale. Instead of casually walking by the snake plant on your coworker’s desk or the pothos hanging from the front window, realize that those plants are part of the reason you feel good about yourself and the work you’re doing.
The rumors are true; an office with plants doesn’t only look nicer, but can also lead to healthier employees. A study conducted by Wageningen University proved that fewer sick days are taken when there are plants at work. Employees feel more confident about the work they are doing and worry less throughout the day when working in an office with plants. This research is based on the calming effects plants have, thanks to their biological makeup. Plants release oxygen and moisture in a unique way that increases humidity in the air, playing a part in what employees breathe in during the day.
The Harvard Business Review did a study that showed some advantages of plants and trees and how they have sound absorbing properties. Plants have the ability to absorb ambient noise and enhance workplace acoustics, elements involved with a more productive environment. Dr. Chris Knight from Exeter University discovered that approximately 15% of office employees are more productive with plants at work. Between these noise absorption capabilities and productivity statistics, an office with plants is one you definitely want to work in.
It’s true that sometimes it takes a lot of effort and patience to get those creative juices flowing during the work day. Impressively enough, research has shown there to be creative advantages of plants and trees being in the office. The Human Spaces Report did a study that showed a 15% creativity increase when green elements are present in the office. When plants are on your desk or nearby, creative thoughts are more likely to arrive throughout the day. Plants and trees also appeal to the senses, and vibrant colors and smells boost energy when that creative block just won’t budge.