Going green isn’t limited to just meeting energy ratings and best practices. You can also go green by creating a conducive work environment. This is the recommendation from various authorities on building design, alluding to the increase in demand for a better workplace with workers’ comfort in mind. Design, however, is just one aspect of better building strategies to enhance workplace efficiency and workers’ satisfaction.
While the rating system of the Leadership for Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) sets the standard for greener buildings, something basic to any worker’s heart needs just as much attention. Workplace comfort and turnover rate have an indirect—and linear relationship. Discomfort leads to pain, which, in turn, leads to loss of focus and low productivity—and in the end, concludes in job termination or resignation.
Design and building experts, in fact, agree on this relationship. Angela Loder, adjunct professor at the University of Denver, says that quality of materials form one of three key components in green building research. This (quality) not only refers to office furnishings emitting volatile organic compounds (VOCs), but also to those that break after a few twists and turns.
Therefore, as office manager, you only want what’s best for your employees. Denver office furniture, for instance, has taken steps to design sustainable furniture, such as Haworth's award-winning Zody task chairs. Made with 51 percent recycled content, the Zody features a patented lumbar and pelvic support system, which was designed based on physical therapy research.