Reasons to Increase Office Collaboration | Innovative Office Solutions

“A collaborative culture” sounds good on paper – but how many businesses actually put this key piece of interaction in place?  Collaborative workspaces seem to be a hot new trend in office layouts – and have proven to be beneficial to many successful organizations.

However cool they may look, the key part to collaborative workspaces can be found in the word itself – collaboration.  Cool layouts are for naught if they aren’t used properly.  We’ve touched on the benefits of collaborative workspaces on the Innovative blog before, but this post will focus on the importance of the action of collaboration – and how it will benefit you, your employees, and your business in the long run.

1.  Increased Innovation

  • When one thinks about “office collaboration”, the cliche phrase “two heads are better than one” comes to mind.  In this case – that phrase is correct.  Office collaboration provides you the opportunity to work with someone you may not always work with, in order to achieve a common goal.  However, as outlined earlier, that common goal must be clearly outlined before collaboration is to being.

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2.  Utilization of Multiple Strengths

  • By combining teams of coworkers who don’t often work together, new and multiple strengths can be uncovered.  For instance, someone in finance may have a knack for the written word, or a member of the customer service team has a deep desire to design.  When new partnerships are forged within the workplace, coworkers strengths can be uncovered – ultimately benefitting each other and the business as a whole.

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3.  Proper and Efficient Use of Resources

  • If one person in the office is tasked with something they are either unfamiliar with or something for which they are unqualified, it can turn into an inappropriate usage of time and resources.  However, when multiple people are focused on one project – where each worker’s strengths are properly showcased – different employees can shine – and projects get completed more efficiently.

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4.  Increased Efficiency 

  • Workplace collaboration allows businesses to efficiently complete important projects and initiatives. The more departments and employees involved, work can be distributed more evenly to those who have the time and expertise.  Often referred to as the divide and conquer strategy – a larger team, consisting of six or eight individuals – where multiple members could each take a small specialized part of the project and accomplish it in a faster timeframe.

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If you’re thinking about redesigning your office layout – or would like to learn more about the open office floor plan at Innovative Office Solutions – give us a call at 952.808.9900!

Innovative Office Solutions – Your One Stop Shop this Holiday Season

We at Innovative Office Solutions love the holidays.  But some of us don’t care for the bitter, cold, and snowy winters.  Having said that, we of course look forward to the holidays.  And with these awesome gift ideas, we’re sure you’ll make this holiday season – and seasons to come – memorable for all those involved with your business!

Scripto Sketch Ballpoint Stylus

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The Scripto Sketch Ballpoint Stylus is perfect for the tech-fanatic at your office, the traditional note-take, or both! With the ability to transform from stylus to traditional pen, this tool is a must-have for any working professional.

“The Scripto® Sketch Ballpoint Stylus makes the transition from ballpoint to stylus easy. The click-action mechanism and soft rubber stylus transforms into a ballpoint made for writing comfort. Smooth matte metallic colored barrel with black rubber grip, black detail and chrome accents. Black ballpoint ink cartridge with tungsten carbide ballpoint tip.”

 

Thunderbolt Dual USB Car Charger

 

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In today’s busy world, we sometimes forget to charge our devices. Thats where this comes in. Ideal for every on-the-go professional, the Thunderbolt Dual USB Car Charger can handle charging both iPhone and iPad at the same time, and is compatible with most of todays hottest gadgets.

“Get all the power you need for your devices from the Thunderbolt car charger that features dual USB’s with a total output of 3.1A That’s enough power to charge an iPad or other tablet and smartphone at the same time, at the same rate as if plugged into a wall charger. Compatible with devices such as iPod, iPhone, iPad, Samsung Galaxy Tabs, as well as smartphones like Blackberry and Android OS based products.”

 

Luxe Renegade Tumbler 16oz

 

 

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*sets down coffee cup* Most of us need some sort of warm, caffeinated beverage to function in the mornings. If you don’t, please tell us your secret. But if you do – the Luxe Renegade Tumbler is perfect. With the ability to insulate drinks, your drink stays warm for hours.

“Push-button lid used to lock drink-through opening open or close. Angles shape of lid controls beverage flow for easy drinking. Luxe branding detail etched into bottom of tumbler. Stainless steel double-wall vacuum construction.”

 

Joule Slim Power Bank

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Tech and necessity meets sleek and powerful with the Joule Slim Power Bank.  This charger’s simple design makes it extra mobile, allowing you to carry it with you wherever you go.  If any of your smart devices need a quick charge, just plug in – and you’re good to go!

“This credit card sized battery backup will keep your mobile devices charged while keeping you fashionable. The 2,00 mAh slim internal battery has enough life to charge an iPhone. The 5V/1A USB output means that it charges at the same rate of most wall chargers. Includes a USB to Micro USB connecting cable which can recharge the battery backup or be used to charge devices that require a Micro USB input like Samsung, Android Smartphones, Motorola, HTC, Nokia and others.”

 

Lando Bluetooth Speaker

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This tiny speaker packs a punch, and is ideal for an office setting, your car, or at home!

“Power your music with this Bluetooth Speaker! Quality sound in a small form factor that plays your music or other audio from a Bluetooth enabled device or via the 3.5mm audio input, making it compatible with just about anything that plays music. Rechargeable speaker is perfect for traveling or in an office setting. Bluetooth working range is 10 meeter (33 feet).”

 

Perka Mugs

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The graphic says it all! Throw away that stress ball and grip this new mug even tighter!

Mug Specs:

  • 17 oz. Capacity
  • Soft Touch Exterior
  • Insulated Removable Sleeve
  • Polypropylene Lid & Liner
  • Spill-Proof Flip Up Lid

 

4 Piece Bamboo Cheese Set

 

 

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Perfect for those who love to host – or those who love cheese!

This set comes with:

  • Bamboo Cutting Board
  • Perforated Knife for Semi-Soft Cheese
  • Hard Cheese Knife
  • Cheese Cleaver
  • Stainless Steel Tools
  • Convenient Storage Drawer
  • Cutting Board and Drawer Made From Sustainable Bamboo

 

Jorg Gray Signature Watches

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Reward your employees with style! Jorg Gray time pieces are the epitome of class and sophistication.

This watch comes in both mens and women’s sizes, and further specs included below:

  • 43/33mm Solid Stainless Steel Slim Case
  • Polished Silver Finishing
  • High Precision Japanese Movement
  • Flat Mineral Crystal
  • Crocodile Pattern Leather Straps
  • Water Resistant to 3ATM (96 feet under water)

We offer these – and countless other holiday gift ideas for you, your employees, or clients!

Visit http://www.innovativeos.com for more gift ideas – or contact Pearlee Coty our Promotions Specialist at 612.386.8204 for more info!

Creative Ways to Stay Healthy In Your Workplace!

Don’t let the fear of getting sweaty keep you from staying active in your workplace! Innovative Office Solutions has a fantastic wellness committee that focuses on the health and well-being of their employees. The committee is continuously brainstorming creative ways to stay healthy in the office. It is extremely important to take care of yourself, and can often be forgotten during the busy workday. What does your company engage in to stay active and healthy in the workplace?

 

Here are some innovative ideas that may spark the interest of your company!

  • Turn your conference room into a Yoga Studio
    • Conference rooms aren’t just for meetings; utilize the space – move the tables and chairs to open the room for engaging activities.
    • Every Monday, Innovative employees take 30 minutes out of their day to focus on themselves and get a nice stretch/muscle burn before heading back to their busy workday. Clear the mind = More productive workday

 

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  • Workout In The Park
    • If you have an open area near your office, what better way to get fresh air while simultaneously working out with               co-workers?
    • During the warmer months, Innovative utilizes an open area across the street to stay active!

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  • Office Energizers
    • When two 0’clock rolls around it’s about the time for a 3rd…4th….5th cup of coffee; why not replace it with 15 minutes  of physical activity you can do…even in your business suit!
    • Every Tuesday and Thursday afternoon, Innovative provides their employees with a trainer from Ultimate Wellness to lead a 15 minute office energizer. Exercises range from core focus, flexibility (ROM) and balance to strength and cardio.

 

  • Company challenges
    • Even if workouts may not be for everyone, come up with fun rewarding company challenges that can bring out the fun competitive edge in everyone.
    • Innovative participated in a “Walk to Vegas Wellness Challenge” in which 81 employees teamed up and tracked their steps weekly. The goal – As a team, walk from Burnsville, MN to Las Vegas, NV in 12 weeks. Each team had to walk 15,039 miles for the privilege of partying #Vegasstyle. Amazingly, the company as a whole walked 36,667.882 miles! If you were wondering, that is all the way around the WORLD!
    •  A tracking board was developed to see the progress of each team. Employees encouraged one another, and benefited greatly!

                            “Just by walking and being more conscious of my daily steps, I lost 10 pounds!” – Innovative Employee 

 

VVegas rewards

  • Healthy Lunch Bunch
    • Join in with co-workers and take turns bringing in fun healthy recipes to share.

The ideas don’t stop here! Continue to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to learn how Innovative Office Solutions can make your workplace more productive!

The Benefits of Improved Posture | Innovative Office Solutions

You may be reading this while sitting down, and that’s okay.  Modern day office culture promotes personal workstations, provided with nice comfy chairs.  However, if you’re not sitting correctly, you could be doing irreversible damage to your body.  

If since you started reading this blog entry, you’ve sat up more straight – you are not alone.  This blogger just did the same thing.  The following are a few benefits of becoming more aware of your posture – and why you should continue to monitor and correct when necessary.

Proper Breathing

Bad posture creates poor breathing patterns, restricts circulation, strains muscles while creating new injuries, and can zap energy and create constant, low-grade physical pain. 

Freeing up your posture, alleviating the tension in the many muscle groups from shoulders to calves, will also improve blood circulation – which carries oxygen to the brain – keeping those neurons happily energised and your ability to concentrate enhanced.

Increased Concentration

A recent study conducted by Colorado College showed that male students with a more proper sitting posture had significantly higher test scores than students who slouched. Lead study author, Tomi Ann Roberts Ph.D, states “an upright posture makes people feel dominant and successful, which in turn improves their ability to relax and focus on problems.” Interestingly, according to the study, only male students benefited academically from improved posture – whereas proper posture seemed to have little to no effect on women.  This isn’t to say that proper posture in women doesn’t help increase concentration, just that the previously mentioned study found no correlation.

Increase Overall Health

Chronic upper body pain is often due to bad posture.  As you begin to continually improve your posture, you’ll feel less pain and tension all day – and soon begin to realize when you’re slouching.  By doing this, you’re retraining your body to have a more natural posture.  Soon after continuing your conscious effort improving your posture, you’ll begin to feel less all-around body pain

Combatting Poor Posture

There are plenty of products on the market that will help improve your posture over time.  One place you should be extremely aware of your posture is at the workplace.  Being that most of us often times sit for almost eight hours a day, that is a giant chunk of time during which we could be improving our posture.  Ergonomic products should be utilized whenever possible as they make everyday tasks that much easier and other products such as sit/stand workstations give users the option to sit or stand throughout the day.

According to some, “sitting is the new smoking”.  Changing up sitting posture more throughout the day will help activate and stretch different muscles throughout the day.

If you’re looking to increase concentration, proper breathing, and improve your overall posture – Contact our experts today at cs@innovativeos.com or call (866) 574-5389 to find out how we can help!

The Benefits of Ergonomic Products | Innovative Office Solutions

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Some people may still be skeptical about ergonomic products and their supposed benefits.   However, ask anyone who uses these products on a daily basis and they may tell you of the comfort and ease they experience.  Work places that currently use, or are thinking about using, ergonomic products can expect to see increased efficiency and productivity throughout the workplace.

Ergonomic products help find the perfect fit.  The better the fit, the more efficient and productive employees can be in the workplace.  Ergonomic products also have some ability to limit and prevent work-related injuries.  Carpal tunnel being a typical disorder from which some office workers suffer – the increased comfort seen with ergonomic desk items such as mouses and keyboards can help alleviate pain, while increasing productivity and workflow. The more companies continue to put an emphasis on preventing these sorts of injuries, pay-out and days lost will ultimately decrease over time.

Ergonomics:  A More Recent History

With the aggressive advancement and increased complexity of technical equipment in the 1940s – it was soon realized that not all benefits of the equipment would be delivered if users did not understand how to correctly use it.  Alphonse Chapanis, a Lieutenant during World War II, most notably redesigned aircraft controls using ergonomic principles. In applying these principles, control panel ease-of-use was increased and ultimately helped reduce the number of crashes that had, until then, been attribute to pilot error.

The term ergonomics was coined – from the Greek roots (ergon and nomos) – at a 1949 meeting of world-renowned physiologists and psychologists. Later in 1949, this same body of scientists and like-minded colleagues formed the Ergonomics Research Society, or ERS, which became the first such professional body in the world.  The group continued to evolve with the changing workplace landscape and begin to incorporate other factors such as workplace layout, light, heat, noise – more physical aspects.  The organization is now known as the Institute of Ergonomics and Human Factors (IEHF) and continues to study the benefits and factors that effect people both inside and outside of the workplace.

Ergonomics Leading to Increased Workplace Efficiency? 

Increased productivity for ergonomic products is more or less a case by case basis.  Take an ergonomic keyboard for instance.  They are so completely different from regular keyboards – there can be a bit of a comfort and learning curve.  After a learning period on an ergonomic keyboard, employees can complete more computer-based tasks in the same amount of time – due to the less physical exertion required when using an ergonomic keyboard.

Before any redesign or implementation, begin with employee feedback as well as job analysis. Thinking about these things first will better help in your approach to becoming a more ergonomic-friendly workplace.  For instance, if employees spend most of their time on the telephone, then it is simply smarter to purchase headsets rather than keyboard and mouse wrist rests. A one-size-fits-all approach to ergonomics will often be ineffective.  Sure, an adjustable chair is a critical part of a computer workstation, but keep in mind that shorter employees will often also need a foot rest to maintain proper posture.

One office item that helps promote proper posture and continued movement throughout the day are sit/stand work stations.  The jury is still out on whether or not sit/stand workstations increase productivity, but working in various postures throughout the day is simply better for your health.  In a recent study, Scientists at the University of Missouri found that the act of sitting seems to shut off the circulation of a fat-absorbing enzyme called Lipase.  If a sit/stand workstation is not an option, it is recommended that office workers vary their posture throughout the day.

If you have yet to adopt ergonomics in the workplace, or are thinking about trying out some ergonomic products for yourself, visit www.innovativeos.com for all of your ergonomic product needs.