Unconventional Workplace Solutions

When it comes to work culture, we've covered the gamut of apps and other productivity solutions we feel will make a huge impact at work. We wanted to shift the focus a little bit to some bigger picture workplace problems: one related to sleep, the other to using office space after hours, and final idea to being both lazy and productive at the same time. The ideas might be a little bit unconventional, but they could help make a difference in improving workplace happiness. Who doesn't want that?

Smiling Employees
via Inside Bridge

Flexible Work Schedules

Are you tired of the traditional 9-to-5 office schedule? Then this new study might be good news for you. Published in the inaugural issue of Sleep Health, it found that employees who were given more flexible schedules and the opportunity to work from home reported better sleep health and suffered lower rates of insomnia.

Why does this matter? The CDC calls insufficient sleep and insomnia a "public health epidemic." Not only does this affect concentration and memory, but it may also contribute to obesity and other chronic health conditions. If we want to improve our health at work, it seems allowing for schedules that improve work-family balance are important to consider. When do you tend to do your best work?

Man Sleeping on Bus
via FastCompany

Multi-Use Office Spaces

Maybe your office space is well designed and contributes to your productivity, but what happens when everyone leaves the office in the evening? It probably sits empty. Well it's true that not every space needs to be used all of the time, it seems a little wasteful and doesn't make financial sense, either.

That's why FastCompany proposed multi-use office spaces. Instead of leaving the office empty at night, they suggest using it for meet-ups. If you're a technology company, for instance, you can support women in tech or cater to a group that solves particular technology problems. Other ideas include sharing an office with a foreign company that has another schedule or hosting fitness-related classes. The latter idea could also incentivize employees to be more active.

Picnic Table in Empty Office Building
via FastCompany

Lazy But Productive Isn't A Contradiction

Why you think of someone who is productive, you probably imagine someone who is super organized, attends a lot of meetings, and generally don't lose focus? However, it turns out there isn't just one way of being productive.

As Leo Babauta writes, "I get lazy, I sneak snacks when no one is looking, I sleep in sometimes, I take naps, I binge read on the Internet when I get hooked on something, I get distracted all the time. But…I still get things done, enough that it appears that I’m productive. " How does he do it? By allowing for flexibility in why he gets work done and planning out certain things like meals to happen at the same time every day.

By doing this, he gives himself flexibility to let his mind wander while still allowing sufficient time to complete tasks. Everyone has work meetings from time to time that cannot be missed, but often times the pressure to be focused 100% leads to less productive employees and business that suffers as a result.

Feel free to share your own unconventional workplace ideas in the comments section below.

Month List