Office Color Schemes That Boost Productivity

April 16, 2018

Most of us spend our days at work, in an office. Did you know that color can significantly affect how productive your employees are?

Research has shown that different colors can influence behavior. Different colors or colors schemes can change performance, engagement, and alertness in an office space. Research shows that 90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual.

Happy and comfortable employees mean that they will more efficient and happier in the long run. Color is not something people think about too often, but many studies have proven what a large role it plays in a person's psyche.

Read on to learn about the best office color schemes to boost productivity.

Color and the Office Space

No matter what type of office you have, it is likely that there are different spaces that serve different purposes. Maybe you have cubicles, conference rooms, or a break room.

Common areas are often painted with bright colors which make them a space for shared ideas and collaboration, while places for individual work and reflection usually use more subtle and softer colors.

Why is this? Angela Wright, a world-renowned color psychologist, developed a scientifically-tested theory of color- the color affects system.

This system shows that while a person's personality and taste affects how they interpret color, color influences everyone universally. Not only that, color is scientific. So what colors stimulate what types of behavior? Read on to find out what are the best office color schemes for your space.


The color blue stimulates the mind. It is often known as the most productive color. However, some don't realize that that blanket statement only applies in certain circumstances.

Not every business is the same, which means that the type of people they employ are different as well.

If your business is something that requires a lot of mind-work or calculating, for example, an accountant, then blue may be a great choice. Blue can be very stimulating for mental work.

However, a great tip is to introduce some orange into the space as well. The orange color offsets the blue, giving it a much-needed balance of emotion.


The color yellow stimulates the emotions. For those in more creative professions, you may want to consider yellow for your office space. Yellow is a very optimistic color that stimulates your ego and spirits.

This color is also a great way to bring energy and joy into an office or meeting room. Yellow is light-hearted, spontaneous, and is attention-grabbing.

If the color is too much for an entire space, consider putting yellow accents in instead. It will bring in dashes of energy without being too overwhelming.


The color red stimulates the body. This color is associated with the physical, which is why you will often times see gyms decorated in this color. Red exudes a strong and powerful energy, which is why it often times associated with the strong-willed.

Red helps show physical strength and stimulus. Besides gyms, if your office is a space where people need to be on their feet, this could be a great option for you.


The color green stimulates balance. If your business in an environment where it is important to have a strong sense of balance, green might be the best color choice that makes your employees the most productive.

The color green inspires balance, calm, and reassurance. Another place where the color green might be a good choice is if it is an environment where money is going to change hands frequently.

Green also helps provoke feelings of tranquility. The color green can be a great idea in common areas or breakrooms. These areas should be an escape for your employees, and the color may help with a sense of relaxation.

It is always a great idea to incorporate green into your office color schemes.

Which Office Color Scheme?

So now the question is, what to choose out of so many office color schemes?

To determine which color scheme to choose, first choose the main color that will work best for your office environment. A good place to start is to ask yourself, do you want to stimulate the mind, emotions, body, or balance.

Once you've determined the color, narrow it down to a specific hue of that color. Keep in mind, a more saturated color will be more energetic and stimulating while a lower saturated color will be more soothing.

Color is both scientific and yet very personal. A good rule of thumb is to go with your gut. Something else to remember is that colors hardly ever stand alone. They are usually surrounded by other colors.

A great analogy is to compare color to music. They work in the same way. There is no such thing as wrong music just as there are no wrong colors.

How you choose to put the music notes, or colors, together is what will create the final result.

Ready to Choose from the Best Office Color Schemes?

It may seem overwhelming to choose from so many colors or color schemes. Not to mention you want to choose correctly the first time since renovating or redecorating can be a huge hassle for a large office space.

There are many important factors that go into choosing the right colors.

While the most important thing is to go with your gut and pick a color that makes you and your employees feel comfortable, there are a simple set of guidelines you can follow to make sure your employees are as productive as possible.

The Author | Melissa Petrusse
Melissa Petrusse, President, Petrusse-Norris Painting - Licensed Painting/Decorating Contractor and Color-Expert. Please feel free to reach out to Melissa with any painting project questions, as she is happy to be of service. Simply fill out the Contact Form found on our Contact Page, as Melissa personally receives each request. View More Post from Melissa Petrusse