FIRST THOUGHT: Protecting Your Assets
Think back to your first job. Where did you store your stuff while you were working, you know, like your purse and car keys? In my first job, I stuffed my handbag wherever it fit, like on the floor under my desk, but by my third job, I had my very own locker. Looking back, I see that an 8-by-8-inch metal box with a lock actually had an impact. I felt comfortable in that office and could focus solely on my work without anxiety about whether my personal items were secure. If you’re a manager, give some thought to your employees’ space and consider making improvements to their physical environment. This will enhance employees’ job satisfaction and maybe even their productivity.
WOMEN IN NUMBERS: 2.1 Million
Enriching employees’ workspaces can go a long way. But how do you spruce up your office environment without a full-blown makeover? Try simple things, like adding a lovely piece of art here or there. Artist folks can always use the business. According to the National Endowment for the Arts, there are some 2.1 million artists—from photographers and painters to animators and graphic designers—working in the United States, so surely there’s a piece or two of artwork out there that can help brighten up your workspace and bring a smile to your employees’ faces.
WOMAN TO WATCH: Roshni Shah, Founder of Impart
Today’s Woman to Watch knows all too well the doldrums a banal and uninspired workspace can elicit. While working as a consultant, Roshni Shah spent plenty of time staring at blank walls and generic spaces. She learned such mundane environments did nothing to energize her. In fact, it was quite the opposite: Humdrum workspaces sapped her of creativity and drive.
As a painter and entrepreneur at heart, Roshni decided to put both her left and right brain to work to come up with a solution to empty, beige workplace walls. That’s when she came up with Impart. Dubbed “Netflix for the art world,” Impart offers curated art-streaming experiences inspired by working artists. Essentially, the company turns TVs into dynamic canvases that liven up workspaces, promote employee productivity and provoke dialogue.
Roshni was nothing if not dedicated to launching Impart, and even self-funded this passion project by working 90 hours a week at her consultancy gig to make it all happen.
Here’s how Impart works: Companies choose from Impart’s curated, rotating art streams, which can be shared on any high-definition TV or wall monitor. And since Impart features new artists every day, its offerings never get stale. Two cool outcomes result from this concept: Artists get exposure for their work in places they might not otherwise, and employees get a morale boost.
In fact, in one survey conducted by the Business Community for Arts and the Association of Professional Art Advisors, 82 percent of employees questioned said art is important in the work environment, and 73 percent said their view of the company they work for would be negatively affected if art were removed from the workplace.
As Roshni knows, art can be a conversation starter. Rather than vapidly noting, “Wow, it looks like it’s going to rain,” employees can kick-start an actual dialogue with something along the lines of, “That vibrant artwork is inspiring me to think boldly today.”
Roshni, now a senior program manager with Tesla, admits entrepreneurship can be lonesome, but she notes the gratification and long-term success reaped from years of effort make the hard work worth it. She says the joy gained from such an experience can be transcendent and impact whole communities. As Roshni says, “Art teaches you that it’s OK to break rules, that there is no right answer. Entrepreneurship is very similar.”
QUITE THE QUOTE
As 18th century German poet, author, mystic and philosopher Novalis said:
“Only an artist can interpret the meaning of life.”
This is Melinda Garvey signing off until next time. Remember, ladies, empowered women empower other women. Share On the Dot so more women can have a voice. Thanks for getting ready with us.