Archive for March, 2014

Office Plant Maintenance Politics

March 25, 2014

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAInside Plants’ main service is to beautify offices and homes with interior plants. We design spaces and maintain the plants we supply. Seems simple enough. When we understood the deeper implications these plant maintenance services have on office politics, though, they made perfect sense. Read on.

Why office workers don’t like watering the plants.
Employees find it insulting to do things they see as maintenance work. Simply put, not everyone is like the dedicated staff at Inside Plants, who live to take care of our little green babies! An office manager, however, hired for his expert management skills and bachelor’s degree in business administration may not feel the same passion, in fact quite the opposite.

How managers make it worse when they assign plant maintenance.
When the task is delegated, office plant maintenance can feel like an unwanted, insulting hot potato. The staff member who gets stuck with it feels foolish, and resentful. Once someone starts talking about an office burden, there’s always another person who pipes up…and things snowball until everyone feels like they work in a miserable place! No wonder managers are so relieved when our folks show up for the first time.

How to keep office workers happy!
This is a very simple answer. Respect them! That means being kind, listening when they have concerns, and not asking your UCLA MBA educated accountant to water your plants. Call Inside Plants! You can count on us to help maintain office peace and harmony, as well as office greenery.

To learn more about office plant maintenance services, or discuss any indoor plant maintenance issues, please contact us. Inside Plants has been providing premiere home and office plant maintenance in Southern California for over 35 years. www.insideplants.net

Let there be Lighting in the Office

March 18, 2014

ImageRecently we visited a gorgeous office. There was fine furniture accented with tasteful art, and beautiful plants, but something felt off…Aha! For all the effort, the mood was completely ruined by harsh fluorescent lights.

Lighting can change the feeling of a space.  When you’ve gone to great lengths to create a warm, welcoming lobby, for example, there are ways to avoid letting the lighting take over. Try these tips.

  • Embrace Mother Nature. Try to maximize the natural light your space gets.  If you have windows, go for window treatments that allow the light to filter through.  No windows?  If you have the budget, switch out your front door to one with windows in it, or to entirely glass doors if possible.
  • Layer it on.  Lighting is best when it comes from multiple sources- not just one set of overhead lights.  Perhaps combine recessed lighting with a decorative hanging fixture, and add lamps on end tables.  The different sources combine to add pleasant, ambient light.
  • Be a task master.  One reason fluorescent lighting is used in commercial spaces is that it provides good work light.  But it’s possible to provide more specific area lighting in the needed areas rather than have the whole space awash in the fluorescent glow.  Beyond work areas, think about highlighting art and plant installations

Designing office space is harder than it looks! But with a careful lighting plan, you can maximize your design investments.  The best design investment? A little professional help to make sure you’re spending your money in the right places. With an expert on your side, you can be assured that you’ll get the office lighting and décor you’ve imagined. Let there be light!  

Making Real Estate Listings Stand Out

March 11, 2014

houseThe housing market is bouncing back across the country, and here in the greater Coachella Valley.  Real estate professionals want to make their properties stand out from the crowd, but how? Here are a few ideas.

Let them steal your pen:  Have pens with the property’s address made up, create photo matchbooks, or other promotional items.  One clever realtor I know made eyeglasses cleaning cloths.  I might not have bought that house, but I clean my glasses every day and won’t forget his name.

Provide unique snacks:  Baking cookies to make a house smell enticing? That’s so 2010. Provide nibbles reflective of the property.  Try tapas at a Spanish style home, or retro pigs-in-a-blanket at a mid-century modern.  Or pick an item and make it your signature – strawberry cupcakes at all your showings will make you more memorable.

Kick staging up a notch:  Renting furniture to fill an empty home is a good idea.  Having a designer make it look fabulous is even better, particularly in a design conscious market.  The easiest upgrade: accessories and interior plants.  The extra layer of décor details makes a space come to life, and really speak to buyers and renters.

Combining these tactics should make listings pop!  Get creative, and create a home showing that would appeal to you.  That’s the best way to appeal to others, too. Here’s to great showings, and great sales.

To learn more about our services, or discuss any indoor office plant maintenance issues, please contact us. Inside Plants has been providing premiere home and office plant maintenance in Southern California for over 35 years.  www.insideplants.net

Value for your Building Maintenance Dollar

March 4, 2014

ImageWhen you own a building, getting the right value for dollars invested in maintaining your property can be a challenge.  Understanding why the lowest price isn’t always the best option is the first step towards getting your money’s worth out of the company you’ve hired.

Building services such as cleaning, security and plant maintenance come in a variety of price ranges. While it is tempting to go with the lowest bid you receive, be careful you aren’t hurting your property by overlooking improvements that might be expensive in the short term, but save you money over time. 

“Watering plants, vacuuming a hallway, patrolling a few floors, how complicated can that be?” you might ask.  Think about taking care of your office building like washing your car, another concept that, on its face, seems pretty straightforward.

But look deeper:  You could do it yourself. Then there’s the automated wash at the gas station, and the mid-level hand wash. Or the granddaddy of them all: a super-deluxe detailing job.  What’s the best way to keep your car looking great for years to come? You don’t want the cheap option, but you don’t want to overpay either.  You need someone who understands your end goals. 

So buyer beware: a lowball bid to service your building may not be the best long-term investment. However much you decide to spend, make sure the company you’ve contracted to take care of this important asset is giving you your money’s worth. 

To learn more about our services, or discuss any indoor office plant maintenance issues, please contact us. Inside Plants has been providing premiere home and office plant maintenance in Southern California for over 35 years.  www.insideplants.net


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