I remember one time when my dad was in the hospital. He was an auto and diesel mechanic, and had hurt himself on the job. I brought him flowers, and he started philosophizing on the meaning of the colors of the yellow daisies I delivered. After noting my surprise, he commented, “Well, I may be a mechanic, but I’m no clod!”
After a good laugh, I began to realize that flowers and yes, plants, say a lot to others. They show that we have noticed them, that we care. And, why is that?
Why do we send a bouquet of flowers to a funeral, when someone is leaving this world, and a bouquet of flowers to a startup company that is just getting started in this world?
It is because flowers and plants represent everything that is natural and beautiful on this planet. Plants are in this for the long haul, and so is your business. If you send a plant to a funeral, you are saying “let the memory of this person live on.” Flowers represent the beauty produced by plants, and the fragrance and freshness they bring to a room create an atmosphere of “slow down and enjoy.”
So, when flowers are delivered to your start-up company, display them proudly. When a potted plant is delivered, read up on how to keep it healthy. The very presence of a living plant on the premises helps to create an aura of welcome to your customers and employees alike. Plants with large leaves have a lush appearance that give a sense of opulence, while taller plants, such as ficus, offer a sense of protection.
Plants, when well-tended, also help to establish the sense that you take care of business. When the leaves are dusted regularly, and dead leaves and spent blossoms are removed, the vigor of the plant will give the impression that the company is vigorous. There are other benefits to an office with plants, an eye to detail such as this will surely be transferred to your customers, and the same care you provide plants will naturally be extended, as well.
Besides being a welcoming touch to your lobby and office cubicles, plants freshen the air. They convert carbon dioxide to oxygen, and actually absorb toxic gasses from the air. According to NASA, plants will remove benzene, ammonia, formaldehyde, and trichloroethylene from the air. All of these chemicals are present in construction materials. As the plants absorb chemicals, they release more oxygen into the workplace.
Most of the time, you may think of plants as being stationary objects. However, while they may not roam freely around the room – at least, you hope not – they do respond to their surroundings. They will commonly lean toward a strong light source, following the course of the sun as it travels. They will sway when the air conditioner or heater blow on them, and when people brush against them. All of this creates a subtle sense that there is nature present. It makes people feel happier.