3 Office Design Strategies that Make Small Offices Look, Feel, and Function BIG

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office designOn today’s highly competitive and constantly changing business landscape, many companies – especially startups – are recognizing that the smartest way to get big is to stay small; office space-wise, that is.

If your company has decided (at least for now) that the best route to long-term success and profitability is to maintain a smaller workplace, here are three office design strategies to help your relatively small space look, feel and function BIG:

1. Go with an open office design.

Nothing makes small offices seem cramped and crowded — or employees feel like proverbial sardines — than an excess of cubicles and partitions. In addition to wasting an astonishing amount of valuable space, these barriers ironically fail to diminish noise or create privacy. And employees loathe them more than anything else in the environment, which means they are not helping your recruitment and retention efforts at all.

An open office design unleashes usable space that you did not know existed, plus it helps your team collaborate and communicate. What’s more, since the average price of even a used cubicle can run into the thousands of dollars, an open office is very affordable approach, and the space can be repurposed to suit your changing needs (e.g. training, delivering a presentation, holding a brainstorming session, etc). 

2. Lighter-colored walls create a more spacious feel.

Do you know why people who want to look thinner and leaner are advised to wear black? Contrary to popular belief, it has nothing to do with their clothes. It has to do the fact that the human eye does not comprehend the color black — because it is not technically a color. It is the total absorption of all colors on the visible spectrum. And so, the reason people who wear black may look slimmer, is because those viewing them are reflexively compelled to look at something else that is NOT black, such as their jewelry, the wall behind them, or anything else.  

The same logic holds true in office design. If the walls or floor is black, then employees (and customers, and anyone else who is in the environment) will be obliged to focus on other things, such as office furniture or lights. This creates the impression that the space is smaller, since these other items stand out.  On the other hand, lighter-colored walls do not trigger this reaction – because, as noted, the human eye is not forced to look at something else. This is why the exact same room painted pitch black will seem smaller than one painted pitch white.

The moral to this story? While black may be sleek and stylish, save it for your logo and other branding elements. Go with a lighter color for your walls and floors (and it does not have to be pitch white if that is not desirable), and you will instantly create the impression of having a bigger office.

Learn More

To learn more about maximizing and optimizing your office space, contact the Key Interiors team today. Your consultation with us is free.

For more information on how to make sure small office feel big, download our FREE eBook to determine if an open and collaborative office design is right for you:


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