Nine Reasons to Keep Your Office Plants Alive

Some people make fun of me for leasing my office plants. We use a vendor who brings us fresh plants when ours start to fade. The vendor also waters and fertilizes the plants as necessary. The plants always look green and healthy.

Office plants are more than decorative. They keep the air fresh in the office, and they lift people up. They’re important. I’ve visited offices without plants, and they feel as if they’re missing something that matters.

Dead plants, however, are worse than no plants at all. If you can’t keep the plants alive, then you should give up and either buy some artificial plants or go entirely plant free.

Why You Should Go Green

Here are my top nine reasons not to let your office plants die:

1. Dead plants make you seem incompetent. Your clients are counting on you to take care of them. How can you be trusted if you can’t keep a plant alive? Can they really trust you to understand the law when you can’t understand how to keep a plant alive?

2. Dead plants are ugly. They make your office look unattractive. In fact, dead plants are more than ugly or unattractive. They actually look like you’ve left garbage piled in the corner or on top of your bookshelf. You may have adjusted to that dead plant in the corner. Your clients, however, will simply conclude that you’re a pig who can’t be bothered to clean up.

3. Dead plants mean you don’t pay attention to detail. How much work does it take to keep a plant alive? Not much. A few cups of water once a week is pretty much all that’s required. Your clients will assume that someone is unable to deal with all of the little things. They’ll think either you or your staff has dropped the ball.

4. Dead plants give an aura of sadness and death. Is there anything more depressing than a dead ficus tree in the corner of your office? A big, dead stick poking out of a pot just brings people down.

5. Dead plants stop producing oxygen, and there’s no reason to have them. People need oxygen. Lawyers need it more than most humans. We spend way too much time in situations that suck the air out of life. You need a thriving plant producing maximum oxygen if you’re going to recover from what you’re doing each day.

6. Dead plants say you neglect things. If you can’t keep the plant alive, can you really be relied upon to take care of your clients’ issues? Clients think not. Your clients are counting on you to stay on top of a matter that may drag on for months if not years. They worry about whether you’re going to stay on top of things. Your actions speak louder than your words.

7. Dead plants make a mess on the floor. The leaves fall off and pile up. It’s already pathetic when the plant is dead. The pile of dead leaves just makes it worse.

8. Dead plants attract bugs. I’m not sure what that’s all about, but dead plants seem to attract these little gnatty bugs that then have to be swatted away. It’s horrifying.

9. Dead plants say you don’t care. The plant is dying. Do you care? Most people see a parched plant and feel compelled to bring it some water. Your clients look at the plant, look at you, and wonder whether you have any compassion. Take care of the plant, because failing to do so reveals much about your personality. You may not be ready for people to know the truth about you, so water the plant.

Keeping an office up and running is complicated. It requires systems, energy, and attention to detail. Keep your plants alive. They matter.

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