In2 Consulting unashamedly encourages virtual offices. In fact, on any given day you’ll find our team of experienced communications professionals in different countries, client offices, cafes, gardens, in the desert or beachside – the list goes on.
Wherever we are, we are connected by technology that not only makes this possible, but moreover, it makes it effective as it results in a myriad of health benefits and supports a different level of efficiency that a typical office environment simply can’t match.
According to Harvard physician Eva M. Selhub, co-author of Your Brain on Nature, time spent in nature turns off the stress response in your brain, which lowers cortisol levels, along with your heart rate and blood pressure.
When stress response sensors are off, it means that we can access more of our brain power, which translates to greater creativity, improved productivity and more energy.
For many businesses or employees, this kind of flexibility is not always possible, but if you’re finding your office walls or rows of cubicles stifling, why not try taking your meetings literally outside of the box to promote more creative thinking.
In2 Consulting has been fortunate enough to work with some great companies who not only support our virtual office philosophy, but have introduced their own initiatives to promote more flexibility for desk jobs. So, we thought we’d list a few of our favourite ideas:
- Lunch and crunch sessions – researchers at the University of British Columbia found that environments with reasonable background noise, such as cafes and restaurants, offer enough noise distraction to encourage more imaginative thinking, but not enough to result in loss of focus. Time for lunch.
- Walk and Talk meetings – researchers at Stanford University found that the act of walking boosts creative inspiration, whether it’s done inside or out. Time to get moving.
- Boardbench meetings – replace boardrooms meetings with park benches, and encourage participants to look at things from a different perspective. What a breath of fresh air.
- BusCycle – grab a cycle, a work buddy and get pedaling. De-brief and de-stress at the same time.
Working harder is a thing of the past. In today’s fast-paced world, we need to work smarter and letting go of conventional notions around ‘desk jobs’ is the first step.
What it comes down to is trusting your employees to do their best work and taking advantage of laptops, which were designed with mobility in mind!
Go for it. You won’t regret it.