Boost creativity and productivity: colors in the workplace

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Colors have a decisive impact on our productivity and mood at the workplace, as scientific studies show. How does this affect our success and our creativity?

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Simone Janson Simone JansonSimone Janson is publisherConsultant and head of the Institute's job pictures Yourweb.


Color up your Life!

Where the good ideas come from shows the video above. But did you know that the color design of our workplace has a decisive influence on our creativity and thus productivity? And that colors even promote the recognition of faces.

This means: Make your life colorful and colorful - but appropriate to the way you work. But the colors are still a little bit differently connected with our brain than we thought.

A scientific study shows more

For example, if you need to work creatively, look for a blue workspace. If, on the other hand, you have to concentrate on one task, you should see red. Because red sharpens the attention for details. With the right color frame you can make your work more effective.

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The effects of colors on brain processes just described are the result of a study at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, under the direction of Canadian psychologist Rui Zhu. I was put through to the study Healthy Stay-in Job attentively.

How was the experiment built?

A total of six experiments were carried out. The subjects were given various tasks on a computer screen. Alternately, the monitor had either a blue, red or white background. The result of the series of examinations shows how important the correct background color can be.

For example, if the test personnel had to deal with a task where details were important, such as when reading address lists, the ones that had a red monitor were the best. In creative tasks the test persons cut off with blue screens best.

Signal color or relaxation

The scientists have shown that colors have a significant effect on the performance of people in different mental tasks. The psychologist Zhu assumes that the color red basically increases the recording power.

As a signal and especially as a warning color, as we know, for example, from warning signs, we therefore pay more attention to it. In contrast, blue people associate water and the sky. We combine openness, peace and quiet, which is beneficial for a creative work.

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Depending on the work we are facing, we should prepare the work environment accordingly, Zhu recommends. Because with the right color, the work is done better, faster and more effectively.

Further exciting research results on the subject of colors

By the way, there are still exciting and interesting research results on the subject of colors, as I do at could read:

Thus, the color red promotes not only the concentration, but also the attractiveness, as shown by the research of Andrew Elliot from the University of Rorchester. So if you are with your boss Manager want to tie up, then they should wear something red. But maybe you should leave that alone, because that can lead to many problems.

Red also makes stricter

And the problems can already begin with the color red, because an experiment by Abraham Rutchick from the California State University shows: red also makes more strict.

In the above-described correction experiment, the subjects who use a red pen for correction were significantly more thorough and successful in the search for errors, they simply found more errors.

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Conclusion: unconscious processes

And there are many more exciting results about color. It also promotes facial recognition, for example. White, on the other hand, ensures a positive image. And, no surprise, high ceilings and white give the impression of space. That's why my office is furnished in white, for example.

This also shows how much of our perception and our brain is still unconsciously controlled today. An exciting subject, which is still worth writing.

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