Wood desk with laptop, coffee and notebook on top

Something is happening inside the offices in the UK. The coldness brought about by too much stainless steel and minimalization. Today, these workplaces are now incorporating woodwork projects such as joineries. This is evident in the numbers provided by IBISWorld. According to it, joinery installation can achieve a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.9% between 2014 and 2019. Within the same period, it can generate revenue of nearly £13 billion.

It also helps the industry is evolving. Today, builders can already use materials such as expanding wood glue to produce a more seamless, cleaner, and more polished woodwork. While wood is a beautiful and classic material, aesthetics are not only its only benefit. One of the primary reasons for incorporating wood is biophilia.

What Is Biophilia?

Biophilia refers to the innate tendency of humans to get connected to or associate themselves with nature, such as trees and plants. It is still a hypothesis, but it can partly explain why people will try to seek nature and why they feel better after spending time with it. The concept of biophilia then introduces biophilic design, especially in architecture. It is the process of incorporating natural elements such as wood products into the space.

Biophilic design can help promote sustainability. Compared to steel, wood creates significantly less energy. Steel is one of the significant contributors to greenhouse emissions on the planet. Depending on the quality and condition of the wood, it can still be recycled or repurposed. When no longer usable, it can decay; and as an organic matter, it can help fertilize the soil.

How Wood Makes Employees Feel Better

employees working with gadgets on a wood table

With the growing popularity of biophilic design, more studies show its benefits to employees. In one of the studies, these elements boosted their productivity by 15% compared to those who worked in non-natural environments. It means there was no hint of green or natural light. One of the possible explanations is attention restoration. It is a theory that states nature can relax our mind by forcing our thoughts away from intense focus and concentration.

Think of it this way. When you’re working, you’re probably looking at the screen for hours. You have no other choice but to force yourself to do it to get your job done. In return, it leads to eye strain and even burnout. Nature works oppositely. Although the elements also demand your focus, it doesn’t create the need. The reaction is more automatic and seamless.

Second, it shifts your mind from rumination or deep thoughts about something. This can potentially result in mental stress, primarily if what you’re concerned about revolves around work and financial security. When psychological pressure is low, it can also reduce the feelings of physical stress. Both can then improve the well-being of the employee, and this can help them become more productive.

Many offices are still within the concrete jungle, which means access to nature is not easy, if not impossible. The next best option is to bring it inside the workplace, and it can be as simple as adding wood elements in the surroundings.