When it comes to branding, most companies focus on external marketing elements such as website design, advertisements or even something as simple as a business card. As important as making office space functional and appealing is, your physical workplace is also an important part of your overall brand.
Visitors and employees see your office space as an extension of your brand identity, company culture and core values. This is one of the reasons why branding and your office design and decor should work hand in hand. Every space should tell a story.
Your brand should be expressed consistently from the reception area to the break room, creating a cohesive feel throughout the space. Carefully making use of every design element can help reinforce a company’s culture and demonstrate the embodiment of your corporate philosophy to your constituency.
Follow these tips to make your brand shine throughout your office space and get an edge over your competitors:
FIRST IDENTIFY YOUR CORE VALUES AND CULTURE
When determining how to decorate your physical workplace, you should first start by asking yourself: What are your company’s core values and culture? When you are able to answer these questions, you can begin creating a workspace that sells your brand.
Having these values front and center can help you start thinking about how to translate them into your workspace. A brand stems from what a company believes and the principles that guide its actions.
Branding a space must be done thoughtfully. Your office design and décor should embody your company’s values in a way that makes everyone at your office feel great.
CONSIDER THE OVERALL LAYOUT
Office space layout has a big impact on the way your customers and employees perceive your values and culture. Is your brand built on intense, individual focus, or is your team’s success dependent on creative collaboration?
If you’re in an industry that places a high value on privacy and confidentiality such as a law or accounting firm, individual offices with closeable doors make the most sense. For creative industries such as advertising or fashion, open workspaces reflect an emphasis on collaboration and communication .
What about your aesthetic? Are you wanting to portray more conservative and professional, or does your brand have a moody, modern or trendy vibe? Your brand and culture might be classic or contemporary, methodical or spontaneous. These attributes should be reflected in the way you design and decorate your office space.
Visually, a clear framework of brand expression should be developed and used in a similar fashion throughout your entire office space.
INCORPORATE YOUR BRAND COLORS
Color has long been considered an important factor for branding companies. When choosing a color scheme for your workplace, incorporate your brand’s colors so your space really upholds a consistent style reflective of your business and its values. Your logo colors are a great place to start, but don’t be afraid to move beyond this color palette.
Take it a step further by finding decorative items and accessories in your brand colors and wall art and sculptures that reflect your brand values to place around your office. The details matter, and when you pay attention to the small things in your office decor, you’re showing your customers and employees that you’re meticulous about every component of your business.
In addition, think about what kind of emotional environment you want to evoke: Plush and conservative? Consider browns, blacks and deep purples. Creative and energetic? Consider warm tones like reds, oranges and yellows. Peaceful and relaxing? Consider soft blues, greens and greys.
CHOOSE APPROPRIATE FURNITURE AND DECOR
Furniture and office décor says a lot about your company’s values and culture. It can convey innovative, conservative, professional or whatever value you want to express. In industries where creativity or technology are in the forefront, modern design elements can be sleek, forward-looking and fun. In fields where trust and expertise are particularly important, your decorating strategy may include more traditional elements, such as academic credentials displayed on the walls. Invest in furniture and décor that reflects your brand with your colors, your tone and your atmosphere.
OTHER TIPS TO SPRUCE UP YOUR OFFICE INCLUDE
1. Use your logo
Include logo signage in your reception area and in conference rooms.
2. Create custom wall backdrop murals
Custom wall murals are an excellent way to reflect your brand and can have a powerful effect on team building. Also, quotes on your office walls that reflect the spirit of your brand is an interesting way to promote your company values.
3. Outline different spaces with rugs
Rugs are a great way of outlining various spaces without creating physical barriers. If you have a larger space with multiple sections, separate those areas with rugs. If your office is smaller, you can still add rugs. Put them underneath furniture to act as nice accents or add one directly outside of your office doors. Even one or two can really liven your space up.
4. Hang works of art
Hanging art can make your workspace look a lot more interesting and spacious. Keep it simple with black and white wall hangings or go bold with vibrant, eye-catching works that brighten your day every time you walk past them.
5. Put mirrors up
Mirrors can change the whole look of your office space. They make any type of space look bigger and can make your office more refined and professional, causing your workspace to feel more open and inviting.
6. Add a funky coffee or accent table
A funky and unique coffee or accent table can make for a cool stand-out centerpiece for your office, and often times acts as a great conversation starter when welcoming new customers.
7. Hang team photos
Do you host company picnics, holiday parties or award ceremonies? Do you and your team set aside time for charitable or community involvement or team-building activities? Turn those good times into memories by taking photos of your efforts and framing them around the office.
8. Don’t forget about aroma
Having nice smells in your office makes a pleasant environment. Invest in some decorative air freshener diffusers or candles to keep your workspace smelling great.
EMPOWER YOUR EMPLOYEES
Hopefully, keeping your employees happy is one of your company’s main goals. Allow your team members to customize their own space within the larger workplace. Everyone has their own taste and personal style when it comes to decor, so encourage your employees to integrate any design elements that will keep them motivated throughout the day. It’s hard to care about a brand when you can’t see the humans behind a logo. It’s much easier to get your customers and prospects emotionally invested in your people than in your products and/or services; and when your team feels engaged and important in the work they’re doing, that reflects outside of your organization.
Your office space design and décor speaks volumes about your company. From your color scheme to the amount of office plants, every piece of your furniture and all accessories should be there for a reason. As long as it conveys your company’s personality and serves a purpose, you can’t go wrong. Is your décor style traditional and safe or contemporary and intriguing?
Make sure to accurately convey your brand image and what your company is all about to your customers and your employees.
Shelley Gorman is an award-winning Las Vegas interior designer of SKG Designs and owner and curator of River North at Tivoli Village, a contemporary home décor retail store. Gorman has been featured on HGTV’s “Renovator’s Challenge” and holds a six-year degree in architecture from The University of Arizona and has worked on projects throughout Nevada and California. Gorman founded SKG DESIGNS in 2007 to focus on the more tactile field of residential interior design. Her knowledge and training of the built environment is an asset to her design toolbox when creating her custom interiors. She works on remodel and new construction projects in Summerlin.