Maintaining a Positive Workplace Culture with Design

Culture in the Workplace

When a workplace reflects the culture of its workers, those employees are more likely to thrive. This topic isn’t particularly in regards to world culture; rather, it pertains to the company’s values, goals, and reason for being. 

A workplace should reflect those that work there, alongside their goals and values as well. Achieving a workplace that is desirable by a mass group of people can be difficult, but one will find that the efforts are very much worth the results.

But why does it matter?

A study found in the Journal of Engineering and Technology Management by Robert F. Hurley reflected group culture and its correlation to new ideas and innovation. 

Tested at a group level of analysis among 8,969 individuals, all part of the development agency of the United States Government, their observations confirm the hypothesis that innovation and productivity was boosted when the idea of maintaining a culture was emphasized among the groups (Robert F. Hurley). 

Many other studies demonstrate the effectiveness of maintaining a positive culture within the workplace, and have supported the notion of its benefits. 

For example, maintaining a positive culture within the workplace has not only boosted employee innovation and productivity, but satisfaction, drawing in talent and retaining it,  and overall well being of the employees. 

Though culture differs between companies, it’s crucial to take the time to develop a cohesive workplace culture that will promote positivity and overall satisfaction. Ideally, the culture should be developed while remaining cognizant of the individual culture that exists amongst employees.

Design with Culture in Mind

There are a plethora of things to keep in mind when considering culture-motivated design. 

As interior workplace design begins to reflect collaboration, socialization, and teamwork of its employees, it’s vital that those designs remain consistent in efforts to maintain employee satisfaction and productivity. 

In a modern office layout, we may find a lot of collaborative additions, such as open office spaces, larger tables, and other shared spaces. This, in a way, forces those in that space to interact with each other, further fostering a collaborative culture. 

To introverts like myself, this social layout sounds rather unappealing; however, we might also find privacy booths scattered throughout the workplace, alongside dividing panels and walls that can separate the space and provide privacy without making the space look compartmentalized. 

If you recall my article on how to utilize Feng Shui properly in the workplace, you might recollect mention of scattering greenery throughout the workplace. It not only produces productivity, but in this context, provides an attractive barrier or severance between spaces.  

In light of providing privacy, it’s crucial to also recognize that sound can be an invasion of sorts. Minimizing the amount of sound that flows throughout the space can also be a great way to uphold a workplace’s culture. As mentioned before, dividers and other panels between individual workspaces can be a great addition. Meeting spaces with closed doors and soundproof glass are ideal as well.

Mental Health Advocacy

Mental health advocacy is also a crucial part of maintaining a positive workplace culture. As the stigma surrounding mental health discussions fades, it’s a great idea to provide spaces where employees feel like they can take care of themselves. After all, these are the individuals who are producing work for the company; it’s only right to make sure they feel taken care of. 

Spaces such as breakout rooms, game rooms, or outdoor spaces are highly desirable in an increasingly mental health-positive workplace.

Choose the Right Seat

Let’s not play musical chairs when it comes to picking out your workplace’s furniture. For a company like Reseat or any other environmentally conscious company, pre-owned or re-upholstered furniture might be your go-to. If your company runs off of collaboration and idea-sharing, pick out some group seating, rolling task chairs, and some sit-stand desks. 

Other design factors such as color choice and decoration are important to consider as well. A quirky color palette alongside some oddities scattered throughout the workplace might reflect more of a fun, modern environment than if you were to stick to neutral tones and traditional furniture. 

It’s important to make these decisions while keeping the goal in mind to build a work environment that reflects the company’s culture.


Factors such as color choice, furniture, layout, and mental health advocacy are just some important elements out of many that contribute to a positive work environment culture. By maintaining these, you can attract and retain employees, fulfilling their needs as not only a workforce, but on a human-to-human level as well.