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colour improves productivity

colour improves productivity

Colour encourages creativity, focuses decision-making, promotes co-operative teamwork and consequently improves productivity.

Oddly, the closest we get to a colourless environment is the modern workplace or study environment. Lack of colour virtually defines the conventional office, classrooms or libraries; cream or off-white walls, acres of grey carpeting, grey filing cabinets, desks and computer terminals. Such sober neutrality is obviously intended to convey a no-nonsense message reinforcing the distinction between home and work and promoting concentration by reducing visual comfort and distraction. 

That, at least, is the theory. But studies seem to indicate that the colourless environment may be literally counter-productive. Research has shown that surroundings which are predominantly a single colour - such as the monochromatic office or library - are inherently disorientating. Colour psychologists identify grey as the colour of dormancy and introversion.

The neutral workplace environment, far from fostering efficiency and application, may actually encourage absenteeism, dissatisfaction, under-performance and disengagement. New trends in office design are putting colour back into the picture. 

Looking at the way colour works and its psychological impact on our lives can help us explore its potential to support a whole range of different types of endeavour, from encouraging creativity to focusing decision-making and promoting cooperation and teamwork.