Each company has its own rhythm and pace of change. An agile, entrepreneurial company may frequently experiment or reinvent. A more traditional firm is less likely to improvise, but rather evolves by applying known processes and procedures. Design must be attuned to these variables of work culture.
A start-up culture is all about innovation and flexibility, requiring a space that is very energetic, casual, and flexible where ideas are fast flowing, workers wear many hats and transition to different tasks and activities throughout the day.
Change occurs daily and flexibility is key. The space is owned by individuals. The environment is likely to be open concept with furnishings that are light, agile, and mobile, allowing the space to be changed by the workers as needed.
Highly flexible and ready for change, the space:
- Supports user control over their workspace through a highly flexible, adaptable, and fluid design
- Empowers users to reposition themselves, or their team as needed, using mobile and height-adjustable components
- Supports access to utilities through a centralized yet unrestrictive spine structure
- Anticipates transient occupancy and frequent reorganization of users and teams
A work culture more focused on project work and creative activity, highly team-driven and interactive. The workspace is designed to foster connection and dialogue and to build a culture of trust and transparency.
The space requires a work setting that helps people feel comfortable and empowered as each pursues individual and collective goals. Equally, the design of the office, its format, and furnishings should allow the company to evolve and transform over time.
Well-defined, yet adaptable spaces:
- Allow for individual ownership with loose-fit furniture that permits frequent changes of position, orientation, and purpose
- Support teamwork by adapting to large or small groups and the preferred proximity and orientation of team members
- Support corporate evolution prompted by economic swings, internal reconfiguration, new deliverables, and shift in the team members
A work culture that is more formal and traditional – likely furnished with offices, workstations, and boardrooms – with the risk factor being a subtle infusion of an open lounge.
To develop a more purposeful workplace, provide diverse spaces with the flexibility to respond to advances in technology, economic cycles, or the need to expand or consolidate. Change is rarely ever required by chance but by the plan.
A steadfast solution for the established office culture, the space:
- Provides user privacy and a sense of control, while keeping employees’ work areas open to supporting collaboration
- Supports ease of adjustments, through architectural elements such as glass add-on panels, and user’s adjustability with height-adjustable tables and screens
- Capitalizes on efficiency and flexibility while using well-rooted planning conventions