It’s no secret that the key to any productive workplace is all about fostering a warm, inclusive atmosphere. If your employees feel happy at work, then chances are high that collaboration will be far more productive and your employee turnover rates will be incredibly low. But how exactly can we promote positivity in our workplace? Consider these five little methods for inspiring joy from nine-to-five and beyond!

1. Coffee!

A timeless incentiviser, office coffee machines have always been a surefire way of increasing productivity and promoting positive workplace interactions with minimal fuss. Studies have shown that if you drink your coffee at the right time every day, you’ll see an increase in your overall concentration and ability to absorb and process information. Incorporating a coffee machine into your workplace will also allow your employees the opportunity to take small coffee or morning tea breaks at their own leisure, rather than having to prepare for large breaks offsite, that may break their concentration.

2. Microbreaks

This is similar to the idea of supporting coffee breaks. There’s also been a lot of recent evidence that suggests that allowing employees to take small, independent breaks will boost the productivity and focus of individual workers, by allowing them to organise their own schedule rather than having to adhere to an inflexible day-to-day routine. We are human beings after all! Sometimes we just need to get away. The luxury of taking small breaks when you feel you need to step away from your desk can make your workload feel less like Everest and more like a walk in the park.

3. Office Calendar

Having fun things to look forward to can make a world of difference in the workplace. An office that has a shared social calendar (that’s full of staff birthdays, special holidays, and cultural events), is more likely to inspire positive relationships between coworkers, and is thus, more likely to be an enjoyable place to work. Even putting together an office calendar can be a fantastic and time-efficient way of boosting morale! All you need to do is get yourself a calendar, some markers and some stickers, and encourage your employees to add to it as they wish.

4. Office Greenery

Incorporating even a few plants into any office can drastically brighten your atmosphere in next to no time at all. Offices with some leafy friends are more likely to be well-curated, and have been found to be far more attractive and inviting spaces, which can be vital to workplaces that regularly have clients or other visitors coming through. But the benefits of having some office greenery don’t just stop at aesthetics! Indoor plants have been discovered to hold numerous benefits when it comes to our own physical and emotional health and wellbeing. They freshen up stale air, reduce stress and anxiety, and have also been known to inspire creativity! And when you consider that even just a succulent and a spider plant or two can provide this immense positive impact, investing in some low-maintenance indoor plants becomes an absolute no-brainer.

5. Games

A lot of us might remember playing ‘get to know me’-style games at the beginning of camp or during the first week of a new school year. Playing small games in professional spaces encourages communication between coworkers, and plays an integral role in the breaking down of barriers in the workplace. There is a myriad of small games from scavenger hunts to trivia competitions, that can encourage collaboration and aid in the development of professional teams. And the memories that we make playing these games can provide us with a strong foundation for developing positive relationships with our coworkers.

Think about it like this: you spend over 2000 hours a year in your place of work, surrounded by the same people. You can either get to know these people and make your surroundings feel as comfortable as possible, or you can spend those 2000 hours waiting to be on the outside of them. And what’s the point of doing the latter, when you can just as easily be happy instead?