In a professional setting, productivity is all-important and it behooves organizations to determine the best interior color scheme for their offices for creating a fun and enjoyable space for their employees. According to various studies, the colors in a working environment can have a surprising physiological and emotional impact. Take a moment to check out colors and their affects on people below.

Red & Violet

Red Office

Red/violet can increase a person’s energy levels and help them become more creative, as it may stimulate adrenaline production in the body.

According to Blake Miller of Think Big Partners, “Red has been known to increase a room’s energy level because of its ability to raise blood pressure and speed up heart rate. This color is a good choice when you want to stir up excitement. Red is also a stimulant for conversation and collaboration as it tends to bring people together. Additionally, red has been found to be the most “impressive” of the colors and gives off the best first impression. Therefore, if you’re an entrepreneur who often brings clients into the office, consider a deep red for an accent wall or two.”

Read more: Increase Productivity – Paint Your Office

Pale Blue

Pale Blue Office Setting

Pale blue is a good choice for a high pressure working environments, as it gives off an aura of calm and tranquility; reducing stress.

“Blue is a cool calming color that shows creativity and intelligence. It is a popular color among large corporations, hospitals and airlines. It is a color of loyalty, strength, wisdom and trust. Blue has a calming effect on the psyche. Blue is the color of the sky and the sea and is often used to represent those images. Blue is a color that generally looks good in almost any shade and is a popular color among males. Blue is not a good color when used for food as there are few blue foods found in nature and it suppresses the appetite,” according to a recent article published by Digital Skratch.

Read more: Color Psychology

Yellow & Green

Office with Light Green Decor

Correct usage of these colors is said to make employees more cheerful and harmonious.

“This reminds me of green grass, green trees,” designer Katie Ridder says. “It mimics nature, so it has a soothing effect. And it’s happy because it’s a real color—it’s not grayed down. The light streaming in makes it more yellow during the day, and when the sun goes down, it becomes more blue. Green is fascinating—it’s warm and cool at the same time.”

Read more: 5 Happy Paint Colors


Dark Colored Office with Black Walls

Black paint sets a tone of power and dominance, but it also makes a space feel smaller, which is ill-advised for small rooms.

“While it may be a timeless and very stylish color from now until the end of time, it isn’t necessarily an ideal choice for painting a room,” says Jenne Joy of the Yahoo Contributor Network. “Black is generally associated with the absence of light, so when it is painted on the walls it will make a room feel smaller and darker.”

Good Representations: Authority, power, sexuality, sophistication, formality, elegance, wealth, independence, depth and style.

Bad Representations: Evil, overpowering, anonymity, unhappiness, mystery, fear, sadness, remorse, anger, mourning and death.

Read more: How Paint Colors Affect Your Mood


White-themed Personal Office

White is a commonly used color, but could be a mistake since it provides a sterile vibe that may reduce energy levels and efficiency.

“White is the opposite of boring, but it does involve a number of design techniques in order to fuse a modern contemporary look without emitting a sterile hospital vibe,” according to Jacobsen Interior Design. “A white wall will sharply contrast with any other colors in the space. For instance, blue-tinted white will look jarring against a red sofa. To incorporate warmth in your interior design, opt for whites that have hints of yellow, ivory, beige and cream. Cool (blue tinted) hues look best with brighter whites.”

Read more: The Incredible Lightness of White

3 Questions for determining the Right Colors for a Professional Office Setting

1. What is the Function of the Office?

Knowing this in advance will play a major role in deciding what the best color scheme is for your professional setting. If you are decorating a doctor’s office, you should aim for a soothing and calming effect on patients, while corporations with traditional cubicles should have bright violets, blues, and reds to energize the employees. If the location involves medicine or the distribution of food, you need to use colors that represent a clean and fresh environment, whereas an office with a lot of foot traffic may be better served using deeper colors to mask stains.

2. Do You Have any Personal Tastes?

Just because studies suggest that bright colors result in energy stimulation doesn’t mean that it will work for your space. Perhaps bright red or violet will actually irritate you, so consider different shades of colors to see if they work better. For example, you may want a calming atmosphere, but you find pale blue to be boring, so maybe you should try a light aqua color or sage green. This can give you that soothing effect in a work space that seems more interesting than if a pale shade of blue was used. For offices with a large number of employees, take a poll and find out the color that the majority wants.

3. What Type of Furnishings Will be Used?

You also have to take the furnishings of the office into account. For example, you may want yellow walls to cheer everyone up, but there’s always the possibility that the color will clash with the furniture. If the office is filled with pale colored desks, you can add a bit of life by painting the walls a vibrant orange or red. If your office is already painted using cool blues or reds, you can add a bit of style with all black furniture. Before embarking on a project to color the office, compare the potential colors to the existing furnishings to ensure they’ll work well together.

Hopefully, you will be able to use the guide above to create an office setting that encourages creativity or tranquility, if necessary. It is also worth noting that the size of the office matters, pale pastels can be a wash out in large offices, and dark or light colors can work in smaller offices.