How to Renovate Your Break Room for Improved Morale in 2024
Break rooms are essential spaces that provide relaxation amidst hectic work days. When employees enter the break room, they want to recharge and prepare for the rest of the day.
How a company organizes these areas demonstrates its priorities and how much it values workers. Here’s how businesses should renovate their break rooms to cater to employees in 2024.
Introduce Food Stations
Long days at work mean employees are expending a lot of energy on each shift. Managers can keep their energy levels up by introducing free food stations inside the break room and providing healthy snacks.
Fruit is an excellent option because it provides energy during physical activity and essential vitamins and nutrients. Bananas, pears and nectarines don’t need refrigeration at room temperature. Other terrific break room snack options include nuts, yogurt, tea and coffee. Managers should ask their employees what foods they want to see to ensure the food doesn’t go to waste.
Food energizes employees and free snacks encourage them to come to work and take advantage of the options. A 2023 ezCater study reveals that 67% of hybrid workers would be more willing to work on-site if their company provided free lunch. Logistics professionals should consider providing free lunches to motivate workers and boost morale, especially considering the divide between remote and on-site work.
Ensure Comfortable Seating
Workers need a comfortable resting spot on break to let their bodies relax for a while. Folding chairs and stools might not be sufficient for employees, so companies must invest in comfortable seating around the break room. Leadership designing the break room should place sofas and lounge chairs because they’re among the most accessible and comfortable options for employees.
The break room should also include plenty of tables and similar structures for employees to eat their food. Placing tables makes it easier for them to eat and reduces messes compared to eating meals from their laps. The tables also serve as a conversation starter when employees sit together and take their minds off work with social time.
Bring in Natural Light
Employees may only briefly be in the break room, but the lighting will impact how relaxed they feel during their stay. Bright overhead lights may cause migraines or overstimulate workers, so the break room should have relaxing lighting options when possible.
Businesses should introduce natural light by installing windows in the room. Natural light is an accessible way for employees to improve their vitamin D levels and improve their sleep at night. A 2022 Journal of Pineal Research study shows natural light is critical for sleep by preventing circadian clock disruption. Additionally, natural light boosts productivity for workers by straining their eyes less and providing more relaxation.
Introducing plants to the break room is another great way to add a natural touch. Flowers, cactuses and other plants are aesthetically pleasing and add personality to the break room. Employees will look forward to going to the break room and seeing the plants as they grow and produce lovely smells.
Companies should find low-maintenance shrubs, such as a bamboo palm or a snake plant, because they’ll survive in low-light conditions. Office plants are also beneficial because of their health benefits. For example, rooms with plants have less mold and dust than areas without any. Other health benefits of break-room plants include reduced anxiety, allergy relief and purified air.
Choose Relaxing Colors
While it might not seem important, the colors inside a break room significantly impact how employees feel during the time spent there. Managers should choose warm colors for their cabinets, walls and flooring to make employees feel comfortable as if they’re at home. Conversely, cool-toned true whites can be harsh despite being simple colors for decor.
Color choice affects an employee’s mood, so managers should poll their employees to see what colors they want in the break room. A 2020 Association for Psychological Science gives clues for color association after surveying people from 30 countries. For example, 68% of respondents associate red with love, while 52% link yellow with joy. Cheerful colors will put employees in a better mood for the remainder of their day.
Place a Community Bulletin Board
The break room is a communal space, so managers should make it a spot where workers can gather, socialize and recognize each other’s achievements. Logistics professionals should place a community bulletin board to post announcements and acknowledge workers when it’s time for recognition.
For example, an employee may reach a work anniversary or show exemplary work in a quarter. The bulletin board can also be a place for employees to post milestones from their personal life. A colleague may announce their engagement, the birth of a child or graduating from school.
A community bulletin board is excellent for spreading positivity and boosting work morale. Additionally, it allows workers to feel valued and appreciated at work. Research shows 29% of employees don’t receive recognition for their work, so shouting out good work motivates employees and helps them stay engaged.
If managers want to add personality to the break room, hanging artwork is an excellent start. Paintings, drawings, sculptures and other art forms stimulate the brain and bring positivity.
Designers could hang pictures of serene beaches, snow-capped mountains and other peaceful landscapes to promote tranquility. Research shows artwork positively affects people both physically and mentally. A 2021 BMJ Open study found that artwork reduces stress by aiding systolic blood pressure, heart rate and cortisol levels.
Another way to boost company morale is to let workers post their artwork throughout the break room. Employees will feel proud to come to work and share their drawings with their colleagues.
Set Up Games
While break rooms are relaxing, they can also be for fun times throughout the day. Setting up a card and board game station is a wonderful way to spend time and relax while encouraging bonding time with colleagues. Managers should select card and board games that are easy to set up and play on breaks, such as Uno, Monopoly Deal and Trivial Pursuit.
The board games also provide an opportunity for company-hosted happy hours and game nights. These social events encourage employees to take their minds off work and hang out with colleagues. Setting up these events aids in team bonding and boosts morale.
Renovating the Break Room in 2024
Break rooms are times for relaxing and re-energizing as employees prepare for their next tasks. These rooms should be comfortable spots for people to eat food, socialize and take their minds off work.
Logistics professionals should survey their colleagues to see what amenities they’d most like to see in the break room to ensure no upgrades go to waste.
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