Does Your Office Space Really Matter?
by Chris Ohlendorf
June 12, 2018
The Answer is YES!
A couple of years ago when our lease was coming due, I needed to evaluate our company’s current office space to determine whether it was serving our company’s needs. My business partner wasn’t shy, and he never missed the opportunity to take jabs at our current space. His primary barbs were about our old furniture, old finishes, and that our layout was uncollaborative. As things turned out then, we couldn’t figure out a solution quick enough, so we took an 18-month extension on our lease. While this gave us more time to plan, it gave me more time to hear about our old furniture, old finishes, and our uncollaborative layout.
With a little more time to arrive at a decision, we put together some internal committees. We had assigned one committee to help us find the right space, one for furniture, and another for finishes. The process itself was pretty nifty. We looked at a bunch of spaces and narrowed it down to two finalists. We interviewed multiple furniture companies before deciding on one and hired a design company. The space really came together, and we made many decisions that would not have been my first choice, but the result was awesome.
Using committees was a bit scary for me as I saw the potential for conflict. But, to my delight and surprise, we set the guidelines clearly, and the committee experience went smoothly. One example was the workstations we chose. We had old traditional, high-wall cubes that created a reasonable amount of privacy. The furniture committee chose cubes with lower walls and standing options that I thought people might balk at because they would have less privacy. However, since the committee was well represented from across the company, the feedback on our new workstations has been overwhelmingly positive.
Read More: About our New Office Space ➣
What was the final result? New furniture, new finishes, and an unbelievably collaborative layout.
At the start of the process, my original question was: does your office space really matter? The answer is yes, big time! We built in open space to encourage collaboration, treadmill stations for working exercise, a wellness room with massage chair for much-needed mini breaks, and a huge open café type of area to host team events and provide our employees with a comfortable place to hang out.
Not only do people seem to enjoy the new digs, we’ve become more productive in our new space. I believe our team is proud to show people around our new office space — I know I sure am.
Check out images from our new office space below:
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