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Workplace by Design

By Maria Lorena Lehman — Get more articles like this sent to your email HERE.

Image Credit: © Steve Kay | Flickr

IT ISN’T WHAT IT USED TO BE

I discovered a site that has a thought-provoking section on workplace by design. Read this introductory quote to get you thinking about workplace design and what principles you use to create healthy and productive work environments.

The workplace today is a result of historical innovations that were designed to make the workplace a productive environment. However the world of work continues to change, and the design factors that once were helpful are adding less value than they once did. (1)

Today, workplaces must answer to a wide range of needs using various new technologies and design principles that not only foster productivity — but also creativity. In addition, workers want to work in healthy, stress-free environments that promote everything from spaces for focus to spaces for social interaction. Work environments need to meet a multitude of needs at once, and that is why workplace “by design” is so important.

With all the hours you spend working, I’m sure that you can appreciate the result of good workplace design. When creating such spaces for clients, it is important to go beyond the typical layouts and schemes to try to tap into the culture of a business.

PATTERN, PRINCIPLE AND EXPERIENCE DESIGN

Again, the site where I found the above quote delineates certain characteristics, patterns and principles that go into workplace design.

Here is the link: Workplace Design

By understanding things like working patterns, layout principles, psychological principles and work experience design — you better equip your occupants to use their work space(s) effectively. Better yet, you foster meaningful work environment “relationships” — yes, by design.

With design you impact not only how well an individual or team “works”, you also impact the success of a business’ identity, operation and growth. The key is to tap into the significant relationships that define a business’ culture — as it grows and evolves.

(1) Workplace Design. ChangingMinds.org.

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Maria: I came across your website through a reference in today's Architect Weekly ezine and am delighted I did. I'll bookmark your site and check back often. I read the first article and then the second and thirty minutes later realized how much time had passed. I've been practicing for thirty years and have always missed the stimulation of academia. I find each of your brief dissertations sort of like a day in design studio. Thanks for the inspiration.

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I am excited to see you touch a vein of values in architecture, I have been chasing myself for years. Your depth of involvement in these very deep subjects is really beautiful and passionately dealt with and well written. Sound, color and value, shape, texture, scale, smell.... all definitive measures of the spaces we should be alert to. [...] I will savor the rest of your investigation of sensuality in architecture. I'm Glad I found you.

Dennis McLaughlin
McLaughlin Architect
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Maria Lorena Lehman is a multi award-winning visionary author, designer, and educator from the United States. Maria holds a Bachelor of Architecture with Honors from Virginia Tech and a Master in Design with Distinction from Harvard University Graduate School of Design. CLICK HERE to learn more.

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