As a business owner, you want to separate yourself from the pack. While you might think this means having some sort of crazy, far-out idea for your company or having a dozen specialties that no one else does, you can actually stand out in much more subtle ways.

By organizing the layout of your office so that it’s approachable and tasteful, you can give employees a definite reason to stay and improve overall morale.

Here are four tips to help your office stand out.

Learn Feng Shui

The practice of Feng Shui is all about moving items in a room to create a harmonious atmosphere of balance.

Since workplace harmony is important to productivity, this technique is definitely worth a try in the office. Most of the Feng Shui guides and instructions you’ll find focus on the home and have specific instructions for different furniture items, like beds and couches.

Some of these specific tips may not be applicable to your business space, but there are general principles as well that are universally applicable. Some of these include:

  • Cleanliness
  • Open spaces
  • Balance and Harmony
  • Color schemes
  • Furniture Placement Tips

That last point is one of the first things you should consider, since the orientation of key pieces of furniture like your desk in relation to the space around them is one of the most important factors according to Feng Shui.

You can research in-depth guides for how to apply all of this to your office. The basics of desk placement is that it should provide you with a view of the door while seated at it. Ideally, you should have a view of your window as well (by the way, Feng Shui says you need a window in your office) but the door is much more important.

Decorate smart

Proper interior design can make or break an office space. If it’s done well, it can make it look and feel truly like home, in a way that makes your employees look forward to coming to work.

If it’s done improperly, however, it can make things really overbearing and obnoxious. Look for things you can hang on the walls, like beautiful paintings or photographs. Make sure not to clutter things up unnecessarily, as that makes your office risk becoming an eyesore.

One of the biggest things that decorating can do is energize your employees and impress your clients. Providing plants in the office, for example, provides more oxygen in the building and can help your employees stay happy and efficient.

It’s also important to consider your employee space when planning your office design. Cubicles are a popular choice among many businesses, but according to Rivier University cubicles are correlated with dissatisfaction among employees more than almost any other type of workspace separation.

As you can see, cubicles rated highest for employee dissatisfaction in almost every area. While this information doesn’t need to be your only consideration when planning your office layout, employee satisfaction is definitely worth considering.

Think minimal

The minimalistic lifestyle has taken off in the last few years, and this can translate to your workspace. Imagine an office that truly feels comforting. There’s a good chance that it’s not terribly cluttered. Instead, you should embrace the idea of having as little as possible. It’s likely that your employees will feel positive about not being overwhelmed by their work environment.

You can apply this advice without taking it to an extreme as well. One of the most common decoration mistakes is overcrowding, or simply having too much to put in too small a space.

You may be tempted to try and cram as many employees and as much furniture as you can into your office. That would seem efficient, but the result typically ends up far more chaotic than you intended. Leaving space intentionally open and uninhibited can go a long way towards improving office efficiency.

Keep it clean

A proverb says that cleanliness is next to godliness. While keeping your office clean may not bump you to a higher plane of existence, it will definitely be great at bringing peace of mind on a consistent basis.

Consider hiring a general office cleaning service to help you keep your space as clean as possible. Even if you having a cleaning staff, you and your employees should all take care to keep your workspace tidy. Lead by example and do things like wipe down the counters in the break room and sweep regularly.

When it comes to making your office stand out, you should be open to suggestions. Your employees can offer you great advice as can other professionals. By following these tips, you can really make your office shine.

About the Author:  Kara Masterson is a freelance writer from West Jordan, Utah. She graduated from the University of Utah and enjoys writing and spending time with her dog, Max. Kara is the youngest of four. She has two hilarious brothers and one beautiful sister.