Creative Seating Options That Boost Productivity

Most people spend the majority of their day sitting at work, but too much sitting in the same position is detrimental to your health and well-being. To encourage employees to get up and move around...

Most people spend the majority of their day sitting at work, but too much sitting in the same position is detrimental to your health and well-being. To encourage employees to get up and move around the office, forward-thinking companies are investing in a variety of seating options. This way, employees can alternate between settling into a meeting space to brainstorm with colleagues and finding focus alone in a quiet work zone.

There’s more than comfort riding on this design shift. Research shows that today’s workforce is more productive when there’s flexibility and autonomy in choosing where they can sit and get their work done. According to the Gensler 2019 U.S. Workplace Survey, 79 percent of employees in workplaces with a variety of settings reported having a great work experience.

A nod to Japanese culture A nod to Japanese culture

Often, offices are designed to reflect the culture of the city or region where they’re located. As soon as you see this space (Tokyo Square Garden in Tokyo), you’ll recognize the seiza-style mats that are traditionally used in Japan to kneel on. In this case, though, there is open space below the tables so workers can stretch their legs.

Rooftop hangout Rooftop hangout

Not only do employees at WeWork Yeoksam Station in Seoul, South Korea, get to enjoy an outdoor space during the workday, they also have the option to literally hang out in oversize hanging chairs. The vibrant colors and tufted cushions beckon anyone in need of a screen break.

Thinking chairs Thinking chairs

These oversize one-seaters at WeWork 500 7th Ave in New York City are perfect for settling in, whether it’s to analyze a contract or have a one-on-one. In this energized space, the bright orange chairs complement the artwork and yellow side table.

Seating that’s a step above Seating that’s a step above

The functional design of this wide staircase at Plaza Real Cariari in San Jose, Costa Rica adds stadium-like bleacher seating. It makes for a fun gathering place for an impromptu staff announcement or just an open spot to catch up with coworkers moving between floors.

Multilevel seating Multilevel seating

Common areas are important for collaboration, socialization, and team building, which is why this space at WeWork 33 Arch St in Boston is so vibrant. The open area’s counter-stool seating up above and the colorful cushioned seating below makes for a fun and out-of-the-ordinary experience that encourages employee interactions.

Circular solo seating Circular solo seating

These playful pods at WeWork 199 Water St in New York look like cruise ship porthole seats. Each offers a fun spot for some solo reflection that’s way more chic than a printed “do not disturb” sign on your cubicle wall.

Next-level decorative seating Next-level decorative seating

Chairs are not just for sitting—they can also bring the entire look and feel of a space together. That’s certainly the case with these wicker rocking chairs at 250 Tower in Salt Lake City. The natural material works with the aesthetic of the room, from the circular wood coffee table to the earth-toned area rug.

Investing in creative office seating options is a smart move that can boost productivity and improve employee satisfaction. By incorporating different seating options, companies can provide employees with the flexibility and autonomy to choose where they work best.

So, why stick to traditional desk chairs when you can have a nod to Japanese culture, enjoy a rooftop hangout, or relax in circular solo seating? These unique seating options not only enhance the overall office design but also encourage collaboration, creativity, and a more enjoyable work experience.

Embrace the power of well-designed seating and create a workspace that inspires and motivates. After all, when employees are comfortable and have options beyond their desk, they have the freedom to think outside the box and bring their best ideas to life. It’s time to break out of the 9-to-5, desk-chair mindset and reimagine the way we work.

This article was originally published on February 20, 2020, and has been updated throughout by the editors.