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I recently attended a seminar on the use of “scent” and how it affects our environment. It made me really stop and think about how and where this could be used when designing an office. We have all been using the sense of sight, touch and hearing to create the desired business atmosphere, but how about adding the final touch … the scent?
“Scenting” is finding its way into the world of office design, and is a perfect way to complete the final touch on a project.
It’s a known fact that color has an impact on the productivity and the mood of employees. It has also now been confirmed that we can create an environment using fragrance that impacts concentration, has some health benefits and may reduce clerical errors in the workplace.
It is a fact that a smell … good or bad … impacts the human emotions.
Think about the smell of freshly baked cookies, coffee perking, lavender or vanilla? Do any of these create a pleasant feeling or trigger a pleasant memory?? If your answer is YES then you probably agree that certain scents can be used to create certain atmospheres.
For example, lemon and lavender are known to produce the most significant positive results for reducing anxiety and enhance work performance. Vanilla tends to calm and relax the nerves.
Companies are branding and using specific scents for specific products. Think about your local coffee hang out. Do all coffee shops smell the same to you, or do some have that specific coffee aroma that hits you as soon as you open the door? Is the smell familiar to you when you walk in? Companies have even gone so far as patenting a scent that is worn by their employees and put on their products to be passed along to their consumers.
But a word of caution; be very careful when choosing the scent for your business environment. Making the right scent choice is ultimate because it must be neutral and inoffensive. It must create a “flow state” where one loses the normal sense of time and is totally consumed in the event. The flow state should be subtle and last up to several minutes.
There are many ways and methods of incorporating the scents into your office. Some options include dry air scent delivery system, scent machines, scented oils and even scented candles and air diffusion. More sophisticated and costly methods involve the use of electronic diffusers or “nebulizers” which come with time release settings for continued and constant scent release.
Your choice on delivery method, depends on the size of the your office and the atmosphere you want to create, the kind of business you are in and what is the message that you want to put out about your company and how you want visitors to your office to remember you.
The next time you enter into a large department store, an up scale shopping mall, or your favorite coffee shop … take a moment to stop and smell the air!