Designing an effective break out zone area for your office

“All work and no play makes John a dull boy”, how many of us follow this saying in our daily lives? It is a bit difficult in today’s time because we are churned in a vicious circle of the corporate world. Time is surely the main constraint that hampers our “ME” time. Hustling between a 9am to 5pm job and then coming home travelling through all that noisy and stressful traffic leaves you with absolutely no energy. But, wait a second! What if you get some spare time during your working hours!! Yes, this is a concept which has already been introduced by many biggies in the corporate world. Nowadays multinational companies have incorporated a “Breakout Zone” for their employees to unwind and relax by taking a break while chasing their deadlines.

Break out areas are mainly for providing a zone where employees can go and have some time away from their screen or the stress of every day working life. They can also be used for spur of the moment meet-ups with fellow workers or informal meetings with clients.

Below are few points you should keep in mind while planning a breakout zone:

Select the right furniture: When choosing break-out furniture, it is recommended to use furniture that is comfortable, versatile and approving to the intended use of the room. We should opt for different types of seating if enough space is available. Cafeteria chairs or multipurpose chairs around a centre table offers enough space for meetings or lunch whilst soft furnishings, such as tub chairs, sofas or bean bags, which can make employees feel relaxed and at ease while taking a break.

Lighting can make all the difference: Not all break out areas have way in to natural light, however we can always work around this with the use of feature lighting. Selecting pendent lights for the break out area, is a great way to significantly enhance the space, creating element and a fluid atmosphere.

Have fun with colour: Don’t be hesitant to have fun with colour in the break out space. Colour is a great way to inspire creativity and enliven employee interaction. This is the ideal space to experiment with, through furniture detail, cabinets, wall paper and upholstery options.

Breaking the stereo types of a normal, dull and grey office, Myntra’s office in Bengaluru is a place where you would love to work. The e-retail fashion company has thrived to keep up its style by extending to its employees a workspace full of fun and relaxation. A play area with snooker and table tennis for the employees to engage in, and a gym area to de-stress.

The other big daddy in the e-commerce world, Flipkart has also a wonderful break out zone for its employees. A little library and a miniature golf zone are carved out within the office space to help the employees get that little “ME” time and enjoy. Moreover it’s very important to leave that desk of yours at least after every couple of hours to breathe a sigh of ease amidst the workload.

Similarly Adidas has also changed the norm of sitting in vast and silent meeting rooms gearing for that boring presentation or conference call that one struggles through. Adidas’s office has a much cooler break out space which employees utilize for informal discussions and chat sessions. Their meeting rooms are escalated to a higher level by involving more of technology. Video conferencing, face time and Skype are some of the inclusions to the Adidas team that ultimately result in more employee engagement.

One important tip for a successful breakout area is to make it feel inhabited. Designing an office breakout zone should start with the purpose of the space - a quiet but casual space, a energetic and elevating zone, spaces that support meeting rooms and all variations in breakout areas should have a different design approach.

All this really seems to be upgrading the work environment for employees. It is very necessary to unwind and give your body and mind some leisure time during your daily routine. Even if it is just for mere 15 minutes it helps. Offices and corporates coming up with such brilliant and unique ideas for their employees and the work environment indicates the change in the monotonous & stereotype mindset of the employers to grill their employees throughout work with those target goals and deadlines to be met. Working in a healthy and vibrant environment not only is a positive factor for the employee, but proportionately benefits the employer too by increasing the involvement and engagement of the employees in their respective projects.

So go ahead and make that relaxing space for employees to increase productivity and spread happiness!


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