It’s hard enough managing a multinational company without worrying about, say, whether your offices have enough greenery. Still, it seems that this is something we’re supposed to be taking into account nowadays, and failing to do so counts as workplace negligence. Of course, I’m keen to support employee wellbeing, but there’s a line where it’s not clear who should be taking responsibility. Office decor, I believe, falls into that category; the question is whether green elements are considered decor or a non-negotiable necessity.
Another way to put it, perhaps, is whether greenery considerations can be included in the realm of design rather than mere decor. This is where it becomes more interesting for me. It’s like, how can I, as a managing director, provide working environments that have wellbeing-supporting factors incorporated at a deep level? That, in my opinion, is within the purview of office design. Close to Melbourne as our headquarters is, though, we’re not in the thick of that scene. As such, we’re not fully enmeshed in the latest trends emerging from the primordial ooze of city life. Perhaps that’s why this plant thing hasn’t been totally on my radar until now.
When it comes to office interior fitouts, Melbourne really does take the cake, and I’ve found it’s worth paying attention to the trends filtering out of there. I’d almost go as far as to say that, as a company director, you ignore them at your peril. This is where there’s a discernible difference between, say, adding a few potted palms and organising a space beyond surface level to incorporate greenery. With the latter, failing to make the relevant inclusions early on can result in falling behind in terms of workplace culture, and losing out on the best talent.
It all comes back to productivity, you see. There’s no doubt that employee wellbeing is important, but ultimately that’s the responsibility of the individual – up to a point. When it comes to nurturing ultra high performance, it then becomes the responsibility of the company.