A Holistic Approach to Workplace Happiness

»The Maldives of Design« are the headquarters of Roman Klis Design in Herrenberg, Germany. In cooperation with Porsche Consulting, Ippolito Fleitz Group created a holistic interior concept that weaves together a human element with business objectives in a playful yet highly effective way...

The redesigned offices of the international branding agency Roman Klis Design are as much about corporate identity and beautiful design as they are about workforce performance: founder Roman Klis believes in the importance of thinking space and an appreciative leadership style, especially when it comes to creative endeavor. However, he says what counts in the end is a solid performance, an expectation very much in line with the company’s claim of ‘Creating Success’. To best support employees to achieve this success, Klis turned to behavioral science, namely to nudge theory – a concept that proposes positive reinforcement and subtle suggestions as ways to raise motivation and boost productivity. With very small interventions, employees are guided almost effortlessly towards working more effectively. These are all found in the new interior, which is strongly informed by the principals of nudge theory.

Thousands of Plants to Boost the Mood


The architects dramatically altered the ambience of the office without interfering with the existing structure. Much of this transformation comes from a psychologically thought-out use of color. Blue promotes both calmness and creativity, as can be seen in the strips mounted on the ceiling panels – an element that also creates spatial depth. Routes within the work zones are kept neutral in order to help with concentration, while pink walkways add a cheerful touch. Tropical wallpapers and thoughtfully placed water sources also contribute to this positive atmosphere. To further lower stress levels, the office is now home to thousands of green plants, with improved air quality and reduced ambient noise as an added bonus. The new workplace also enhances connectivity and interaction –by mixing sitting and standing spaces and adding clam-shaped meeting points, employees are able to freely circulate in an environment which promotes the exchange of ideas and information.Generally, much more space has been dedicated to communication, following an explicit wish of the employees. The new café on the upper floor offers an additional place for them to refuel and hatch fresh ideas.