5 ways to support employees with different working styles

5 ways to support employees with different working styles

When you manage an office, you must consider the many different personalities that work with you. Different employees have different needs, and you need to provide the right work environment for everyone to be their most productive.

Each member of your team will find themselves gravitating to different spaces, and if you create a workspace that feels comfortable for everyone, you’ll have an amazingly productive team.

  1. Create quiet spaces for individual work

    Many people require quiet to be productive. They’re easily distracted by having people around them or by hearing noises. In an open office environment, it’s very difficult for these people to be able to block out distractions and focus on their work.

    Unfortunately, most office environments are loud—full of printers working, people walking around, and phones ringing. One great solution is to provide noise-canceling headphones to employees who need them. When they wear them, all the distracting noises of their surroundings will be blocked out and they’ll be better able to focus on their work.

    Young employee working on desktop while wearing noise cancelling headphones.
  2. Create collaborative space for teams to come together

    While many people need quiet and privacy to get their work done, others crave teamwork and collaboration. For those employees who like being around other people, they won’t enjoy their work if they have to spend the whole day by themselves. That’s why you should create a space that lets these types of employees work in a collaborative style.

    One simple way to do that is by purchasing round tables and placing them in the shared areas. If your employees work with laptops instead of desktop computers, they can easily relocate to these more social environments when they have meetings or when they feel like being around other people.

  3. Offer flexible work hours

    Unless your employees have a ton of client interaction, there’s a good chance that you could provide a more flexible work schedule than you usually do. Maybe you could even let them choose their own schedule or work from home on some days. When people feel like they have control over their work environment, instead of just punching a clock, they’ll get more done. In fact, they may even be more productive when they work from home.

  4. Make your breakroom comfortable

    People spend a huge portion of their waking hours at work, and many of those hours are stressful. This is also a problem for members of management. If your employees burn out and aren’t happy at work, you’ll need to spend more time and energy recruiting and training new employees.

    Colleagues talking in break room.

    A comfortable workspace goes a long way towards employee retention. When people are happy at work, they’re less likely to look for a new job—and more likely to get their work done quickly and accurately. One simple way to make your workplace happier is by providing a comfortable break room.

    Adding a few cozy chairs, comfortable couches, and a quality coffee machine will convey to your employees that you actually do want them to relax and take a break.

  5. Allow people space to work in privacy

    Many people like the idea of being able to work privately. Ideally, those employees would have their own offices, where they can close the door and get their work done in quiet. However, it’s rarely feasible for everyone in a company to have their own office space. Often, the closest you can get is creating cubicles. Office partitions are a simple way to create private spaces for everyone on your team.

At the end of the day, every person who works for your company is different and has unique needs. As the manager, your job is to listen to those needs and find a way to make everyone happy at work. It can be hard to do, but your efforts will pay off in a happier, more engaged, more productive workforce.

For more tips on how to design the best office space for your business—including how to reduce noise in an open-concept space—make sure you follow Cafe Quill.