How a Zen Room Enhances Employee Productivity

Written on Monday, 14 May 2018

Modern-day workplaces tend to be fast-paced, demanding and stressful – it’s the nature of business to be ‘always on’, but it can leave employees feeling run down and unproductive. The solution? Bring a little Zen into your office, with notions of calm, tranquillity and focus to help balance out the bustling demands of a growing business.


Image source: Pixabay

What is Zen?

Zen is a Buddhist philosophy drawn from Japanese culture. With emphasis on meditation and intuition, it originally offered a very simplistic take on Buddhism without studying scripture. Nowadays, Zen is used more widely to promote a state of mindfulness that is relevant to everyone, encouraging people to focus fully on the present moment and worry less about the future.

How will a Zen room enhance employee productivity?

By bringing Zen concepts into the workplace, you can have a huge impact on employee morale and productivity. When you think about traditional offices, there are constant disturbances that can impede creativity. Doors banging shut, phones ringing, across-the-room banter, pungent lunches – it can all lead to inattention and lower quality work.

Zen principles help to actively decrease stress levels and, by offering a dedicated Zen room or area, you’re providing somewhere for employees to take a more impactful, peaceful break away from disruption. On a daily basis there’s a lot of problem solving, creativity and intuition going on, meaning that the brain needs time to recharge for maximum productivity and to avoid burning out. Mindfulness also helps promote greater self-awareness and clarity, leading to better communication.


Image source: Pixabay

How to create a Zen office space

Obviously, it’s not realistic to change your entire office environment and there will always be an element of hustle and bustle. But you could transform the break room into a Zen-inspired haven, or find ways to incorporate Zen themes everywhere without spending a fortune. A little creativity can go a long way!

Create a dedicated quiet ‘zone’. If you do have the space for a dedicated room, this is the perfect space for employees to use for meditation and reflection, or somewhere to brainstorm and collaborate with no distractions for complete focus.

Put up motivational prints and quotes. Think landscapes of pinewood forests and snow-tipped mountains, or a favourite inspiring quote you found on Pinterest. Daily interaction with images that promote a sense of calm and tranquility will help to re-centre your employee’s mindset.

Counteract disagreeable smells. When Tom’s having his daily tuna baguette for lunch, the smell can linger in the air for hours. Use reed diffusers or a space spray to neutralise unfavourable aromas. You could even choose scents with specific properties, such as lavender for calm or citrus for energy.

Organise and declutter. Make sure you have plenty of storage for files, products, hardware – ideally, anything that doesn’t need to be out should be put away. Messiness can have a direct effect on mood and stress levels, so keeping things simple and only providing the essentials can boost efficiency and happiness.

Bring the outdoors in. For instant Zen, houseplants have been proved to increase productivity and morale, with some, such as aloe vera and peace lilies, even offering air-purifying properties. If you’re after something a little more low maintenance but still aesthetically pleasing, terrariums are perfect.

Have you got any tips to create a Zen-inspired office space? Let us know @OregaOffices!


work-life balance, zen, buddhism, office interior, workplace trends, workplace design, office design, inspiration, office culture, productivity

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