Step out of the box by thinking about reducing your big greeting space. The high ceilings and imposing receptionist desk can be stand-offish, so look for ways to inject a little humanity into your public face. Your company reception area should be inviting and warm, no matter the focus of your business, offering a strong showing for both new and returning clients. Your first step- look to your anchor wall.
Making a bold statement
Offset your greeting space by delineating your anchor wall from the others in the room, especially if you have high ceilings. Match a bold color to one identified on your marketing material that reminds visitors of who you are. Lawyer firms do well with warm reds to soften traditional dark hardwoods, such as burnt umber or a mahogany-tinged burgundy. A plaque with the company name or vision can be situated front and center, but it’s not necessary. There are plenty of commercial art selections available that speak to your focus- blueprints for architectural firms, antique anatomy lithographs for doctor’s offices, and draftsman proofs for engineering firms.
Choose art to offset yet compliment your bold anchor wall, drawing the eye to the object’s complementing piece across the room. This could be a similar art piece, or a three dimensional representation such as a model or sculpture following the same theme. The foundation is the wall – use it wisely.
Insert a bit of fun
No matter your business model, you have an opportunity to insert some levity in your commercial interior design. Try using overstuffed couches for your guests to relax into, or a fun, community themed framed photograph on an off wall. You don’t want to go overboard with this concept, but carefully selecting elements that your guests can enjoy will let them know of your casual side as well.
An area rug with a whimsical or bold pattern underfoot can do wonders when pulling together traditional commercial furniture designs. Art with a flare of the unusual will have passers-by stopping mid stride to view and interact. Lighting can bring a sense of fun as well, with fixture styles displaying a unique design or projected in unusual ways. Tinted bulbs placed in box lights on the floor can highlight art and draw the eye about the room.
Interesting plants add a wonderful sense of the unique to a space, with exotic, broad leafed greens intermingled with petite ferns and floral punctuations. Speak with your environmental maintenance contractor (the person who waters your plants) to find the right mix of hardiness and whimsy.
Older offices have a habit of displaying oil paintings of past board members along public spaces, but the concept is out dated and archaic. Clients have a hard time relating to a formal portrait, so insert your company’s personality by using photographs from company functions. Picnics, team building exercises, and other gatherings outside the office with a candid but well composed look are wonderful for introducing your team to your clients.
Group photographs in an appeasing pattern along one wall, with a way to identify the people in the pictures for strangers. Brass plates along the frame or even appropriately sized stencils beneath the image match names to faces and share your company’s personality quite well.
There are plenty of ways to showcase your company’s personality without bombarding your visitors with marketing material each time they walk through your door. Building a design off the anchor wall and into the greeting space lets clients know they are working with a firm that takes their comfort into account.