For most of us, work is a second home. We’re there at least forty hours each week, often in a very small space that we call ‘our own’. Whether your space is a cubicle, an open-concept desk or an office, it can be optimized with simple office decor. So you can enhance your performance, without changing a thing about your work habits.
The privacy factor
When your office lacks privacy, you’re forced to divert energy away from your tasks to avoid distraction. That creates a mental drain and leads to poor productivity.
But research shows that personalizing your space can mitigate those negative effects. To reduce emotional stress and exhaustion associated with low-privacy work areas, bring in family photos, your favourite throw pillow and an office plant. The more ‘you’ the space feels, the more productive you’ll be.
A better attitude
Researchers in the UK learned that simply allowing an employee to decorate her own office led to a 30 percent increase in productivity. Why? When a worker feels like she has control over her work environment, her attitude dramatically improves.
The benefits of colour
Most offices are decorated in neutrals. Grey walls, beige carpets and black office chairs might look professional, but they sure lack personality. Back in the 1960s, researchers found that factory workers’ productivity increased when they took the workers out of neutral workspaces and into factories with colourful elements. If you’re a creative type, consider bright colours. And if your job is high-stress, try soothing pastels.
Online marketing allows businesses to create a unique connection with clients. In the marketing world, they call this inbound marketing, or the pull. Clients are free to click on your email newsletter or targeted advertisement whenever they wish. Your marketing literally has to pull that client in.
But in the social media age, are businesses forgetting about the other side of marketing? Outbound marketing or the push uses printed material, putting advertisements and newsletters into your client’s hand. And, according to Andrew Griffiths, business blogger and entrepreneur, small businesses still need a good balance of push and pull in order to thrive.
If you’ve forgotten what it’s like to send out a paper newsletter, brochure or flyer don’t panic. Get your creative juices flowing with these four tactics to create effective printed marketing materials.
- Post cards. Will the gesture of thank-you cards ever go out of style? The people at American Express think not. This old-school marketing method can establish a genuine connection with clients. Following a purchase, send out a thank-you card and don’t be afraid to include upcoming promotions or events as a P.S.
- According to recent studies, eight out of ten adults prefer print to digital and 50% of millennials hope to continue reading printed copy well into the future. Experts say this is because print allows for deep reading more so than digital formats. For small businesses, a physical newsletter can go a long way; prospective clients must give it undivided focus and will therefore establish a deeper connection to the material.
- Receipt-size flyers are a great way to keep customers engaged even after they’ve made a purchase. Slip these in with receipts, whether you’re a physical shop or an online retailer. According to Printaholic, when it comes to flyers, brevity is your friend. Today’s readers have short attention spans, so your content needs to be digestible for even the most impatient scanners. Grab them with a catchy title, focus on just one event or promotion, and use bullet points rather than paragraphs.
- There’s a reason bands still use posters to advertise upcoming concert dates: posters allow you to reach a large audience with minimal effort. How many cars drive past that condo development every day? How many people window-shop at that local retailer? Printing and distributing posters is a great way to introduce your business to the masses. To make that introduction a good one, do your research and follow Creative Bloq’s tips for poster design.
Stress can hit us at any time at work and leave our minds cluttered and frustrated. Here are a few short ways to relieve stress when it hits you at work:
Peel an orange
Focus on the motion of peeling the orange and how the rind feels between your fingertips. Try to peel the orange in an unbroken coil, it will refocus your mind on something simple and pleasurable and give you some time to relax.
Eat a banana
Bring a banana to work with you every day, they contain high levels of potassium that regulate blood pressure to relieve stress and improve energy and recovery.
Play dramatic music
Music with a strong drum beat and dramatic sequence can be equally as relieving as classical music. Hum along to one of your favorite songs to put you in a happier mood.
Massage your ears
Your ears contain many nerves, so learn the pressure points that help with stress and take some time to massage them.
Play paper ball
Scrunch up balls of discarded paper and toss them in to your trash can. Set a goal of getting 5 paper balls in the trash. You will instantly feel good about yourself when you reach your goal.
Find a ridiculous screen saver
Browse through some images to find a ridiculous one that will make you laugh.
Draw a messy picture
Put your pen on paper and don’t lift it for 60 seconds. Your drawing doesn’t have to make sense or look like anything, the point is to relieve your overwhelmed mind with a mindless activity.
Stare at a point on the wall and allow yourself to blank out for a minute. A way of clearing a congested mind is to accept defeat and temporarily do absolutely nothing.
Wriggle your toes, fingers, nose, and legs to waken your body and promote circulation.
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