What color are the walls in your workplace? Do you even know? More importantly, do you know that whether the walls you’re surrounded by are red, blue, gray, or white can have a profound impact on employee engagement?
Is there an ideal color for any office? Unfortunately not. Different folks react to different colors in different ways. With seemingly infinite resources, companies like Google are able to A/B test the colors of their walls, ultimately settling on whichever color the data says makes its workers more productive.
But odds are your company isn’t Google, at least not yet. So what color should you paint your office? Probably any color other than white, but it depends on what you’re trying to accomplish. Generally speaking, this is how colors in the workplace affect your mood:
Though white walls exude an image of cleanliness, they also remind us of places we don’t like to be (e.g., the doctor’s office). Not surprisingly, white rooms create feelings of sterility, blandness, and inaction. According to Fast Company, white is the absolute worst color to paint an office. If your walls are currently white, it’s time to switch things up.
The color blue can have a calming effect on the office, according to Shape. In fact, it’s said that blue walls help lower stress and reduce heart rates. If you’re worried that your workers are on the brink of having massive heart attacks because of the fast-paced nature of your work, you might want to try and calm them down a bit by applying a fresh coat of soft blue paint to the walls of your office.
Symbolizing passion, love, and anger, red is quite the powerful color. In a workplace setting, red walls can help get employees’ blood flowing, increasing their heart rates and boosting their brain activity. But be warned: red can also get employees’ blood boiling. As such, it’s probably better to avoid the color altogether or just use it as an accent.
As one of the brightest colors, yellow can provide a spark of energy. It can get our minds working and jump start our productivity. Unfortunately, yellow is a bit of a tease. Due to its vibrancy, yellow irritates us after a while. Because the color reflects a lot of light, it’s hard to look at. And if you can’t even look at the walls without wanting to scream, how can you possibly expect to get things done?
The color that reminds us most of nature and life can work wonders in the office. Green reminds us of being outside and running through the grass on a warm summer day. Because of this, the color can be particularly relaxing; looking at green requires the least amount of eyestrain, according to The Huffington Post. If you want your employees and customers to feel welcomed, it might be time to start shopping for a certain shade of green.
It’s true the color gives off an alluring, comforting vibe. But how would you feel if you walked into an office that was thoroughly painted pink? Despite the benefits of pink, the color should not really be considered in professional environments. It’s too informal.
Now that you’re aware that the color of your office has an impact on your employees’ productivity, it’s time to head to the local hardware store to grab a set of brushes and some paints and give your walls a makeover. Unless, of course, you’ve already got the best color on the wall.