July 13, 2015

What color should you paint your office? Red? Green? Blue? Maybe just keep the walls white? It seems like such a simple question with such a simple answer.  It should be as easy as picking any color, hiring the painter, and going from there.  As long as the color matches the rest of the interior decorations it should be fine, right? Wrong!

Colors elicit emotions, and scientists have studied how different colors impact the ways we think and act.  This color wheel can provide a good introduction to how different colors commonly have different impact on our brain waves and ultimately the way we think and act.

Before you go into the Home Depot and pick a color, there is a lot you should know about how colors can impact a work environment.  Amy Morin, contributor for Forbes Magazine, interviewed Sally Augustin, Ph.D., to gain insight on color psychology (read the full article here).  Augustin is known worldwide for her knowledge on person-centered design.  At her website Design with Science, she teaches people and businesses how to advantageously use color in their office. 

She explains that color has the ability to elicit different reactions.  It is important to know these based on the type of office you are decorating.  Tailoring the interior décor to the purpose of the company is crucial for success.  For example, companies that revolve around a creative mindset should consider painting their walls green.  This color is linked with nature and regrowth, ultimately igniting “thinking outside of the box” thinking and productivity. It's why you're seeing offices like these:

On the contrary, the color red hinders analytical thinking.  Red makes people act impulsively and have short bursts of energy, reducing concentrated work.  The disparity between these two colors illustrates why it is necessary to think about which color to paint your office.  Read about the impact of other colors by reading all of Amy's thoughts here.  The bottom line is that colors create connections in our brain and stimulate responses that can translate to positive or negative work ethic, productivity, and outlook.

Next time you go to pick up that paint brush, think about if the color you’re painting will yield the results you want in your office!  Choose carefully!


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