For most businesses, the lobby is the customer's first impression. The way a welcome area looks, the way it's kept, its cleanliness, and friendliness of the receptionists all go to define how a company is looked upon, so it's important to get things right from the very start. Finding friendly people however is the easy part, but for those of you that need a little extra help in the design department, never fear! Here's OfficeAnything's top tips from the experts on ways to leave a lasting impression with your office welcome area!
Choose an Effective Layout
It may not seem like it, but the way furniture is laid out on a floor plan can drastically effect the way customers view your business. The slightest thing like the back of a sofa facing the entryway can project a closed-off aura that leaves guests feeling isolated and ignored. To ensure the best layout for your office furniture, walk through the door of your establishment to experience firsthand the way a guest might view the situation. Now, furniture doesn't always have to face the door. If your office has an entertainment feature like a television, it's best that the furniture faces that, or is arranged in a circular pattern open on one side for easy access. Still, its important to show that your business cares about the guest's experience, so place the receptionist as close to the door as possible.
Next, take careful inventory of the furniture you've got. Place larger, taller pieces like sofas at the back of your layout, and shorter, more accessible pieces like coffee tables and small chairs towards the front. If you can't decide where to put things, sometimes the display pictures of affordable lounge furniture sets for sale can give some good layout ideas.
Going modern is a great way to earn the respect of potential customers, especially when it comes to furniture. In today's high tech world, one of the most effective ways to woo guests is with furniture that can hold its own against the gadgetry. Things like lounge chairs with tablet arms have gradually been replacing accent tables in offices where guests like to use laptops. Tablet arms give visitors their own personal table to set beverages, magazines, iPads, and small computers to use while they wait. In addition to practicality, contemporary lobby furniture for sale often features stylish modern designs that are sure to leave a memorable impression on the minds of any office guests. Many chairs and sofas come in a wide array of colors, accents, and upholsteries to better match existing office decor.
Use Unique Upholstery
Speaking of upholstery, what better way to earn attention than with some outlandish colors? Okay, so maybe the furniture doesn't have to be too outlandish, but it definitely helps if the decor is memorable. In rented office spaces where a landlord may not allow the painting of walls to reflect the colors of the business, furniture is often the only place where managers can showcase the look they want. Brands like Lesro for guest furniture and RFM Preferred Seating office chairs both feature guest chairs with tons of fabric and leather color choices. Choose the fabrics that best match company colors, or that reflect the luxury atmosphere with stylish leather and watch the guests swoon!
Accent Furniture Matters
Even if high tech tablet chairs have been on the rise in popularity, we still feel pretty certain that stylish coffee tables for lounge use are here to stay. Accent furniture encompasses more than just tables. It can include lamps, statues, plants, and pictures as well. Looking at the list, one may realize that many of these things appear to serve no discernible purpose in an office environment, but that sort of thinking couldn't be more wrong. In waiting areas where guests may have nothing more pressing to do than look around the room, accent furniture is often the only thing to keep them entertained. Businesses that can't afford televisions for guests have been relying on decorative paintings since before the TV was invented. In the end, accent furniture serves all sorts of purposes, from providing additional lighting, to providing entertainment, to filling up empty wall space. The distractive quality of stylish furniture buys time for a busy workplace by keeping guests occupied rather than bored, and in lobby environments, that can make all the difference.
Lighting Sets the Tone
No one wants to walk into a waiting area that feels like a Tim Burton film. (Well okay, maybe a few of us do, but there's only so much whimsical darkness the human mind can take.) Dark colors are fine for a business where the darkness means something. For example goth clothing stores and game arcades may rely on subdued tones to lure in their clientele. However, for most other professional spaces, it's best to stick with the bright and cheery. Light can have a tremendous effect on the human psyche, and in waiting areas, keeping visitors as happy as possible is of the utmost importance. To do this, choose fun, clever lighting sources that keep the office feeling upbeat. Cool hanging style lights and table and desk lamps for office lighting look just as great as they sound. For those on a budget, nothing makes a better light source than the sun. Just open a few windows and let light shine in!