Unless you were born in the nineties, you could still be labouring under the assumption that company offices are still governed by grey wallpaper, regulation paper-clip order and cubicles (think – The Matrix). The good news is that times have changed; it’s become clear that employees need to be comfortable in their surroundings – it boosts productivity – and clients prefer to see a brand in real life, as opposed to a simple logo on paper.
The following companies have approached their office designs from the angle of boosting staff morale and providing creative environments that stimulate ingenuity and resourcefulness. These are considered smart offices because they give brands a competitive edge, placing them firmly in line for serious client business.
Situated in a beautiful forest, Selgas Cano offices were designed by Iwan Baan, who brought nature into the office by making the above-ground section a primarily glass structure.
What many don’t realise is that the glass structure that they see above ground, is just the top of the company’s building. Half of the office is partially constructed underground, which provides great insulation against the winter chill and comfort from the summer heat.
While seated at their desks, staff can enjoy wildlife as it passes by their windows, and they are privy to the amazing changes of the forest as the seasons come and go. A stress-free environment; and you couldn’t get further away from the concrete jungle.
Located in Thailand, Punspace is much like Work & Co in South Africa, which offers a creative interior, and a flexible, original, fully serviced work space. Designed with freelancers and small business operators in mind, it’s a Mecca of hot seats, stylish conference rooms and offices that are available for short or long-term rental periods.
The Punscape interior has Skype rooms set up just for private and conference calls, trendy boardroom tables, and a host of other amenities such as a beautifully equipped kitchen for clients to enjoy. The furnishings were clearly selected to create a comfortable environment to work in. It gives entrepreneurs a professional space in which to meet their clients; to convey the message that brand- conscious entrepreneurs are competitively on the cutting edge.
Not to be outdone by its major competitor – Google – AOL has picked itself up, dusted itself off and decided that if it was going to move with the times, they needed to change their online and their office design. This change included moving the HQ to Palo Alto where designers Studio O+A were brought in to inject life back into the AOL office culture.
Breaking down walls, the idea was to create a completely open plan office space that encouraged staff interaction, which no longer happened at the single water cooler in a sparse corridor. Employees can move around the new office, sitting at any of the long bench tables that promote collaboration, while complementing the dropped ceilings, modern industrial furniture and circular pods (for meetings).
With the freedom of flexibility, easy interaction and inspiration around every (shaped) corner, staff are able to harness their creativity and be more productive than they were in tightly structured cubicles.
This is truly one of the most amazing offices in the world. The sheer magnitude of the design that went into the Lego offices is enough to make even a grown child cry. It’s a space of pure enjoyment and inspiration that will bring out the kid in anyone. A playful setting, one that that is based on Lego’s philosophy of putting children first, the company offices are focused on stimulating creativity.
Large scale Lego blocks can be found around the offices, while a huge indoor slide between floors is a fun option if you don’t like stairs. This work space is filled with private pods for meetings, laptop bars, and shelves showcasing the latest – and coolest – new Lego offerings. *Sigh.
Without a doubt, Missing Link is one of the coolest offices ever because it’s organised chaos that promotes inspiration, productivity, and the desire to actually go to work. This marketing company owner based his office interior on the fact that we spend so much time at the office, it’s only fitting that employees be given a space in which they feel at home.
The interior is made up of a mishmash of everyone’s dream working environments; fire poles, bathtub desks, a tree house for a boardroom, a shooting range to let off steam, and a caravan made to look like a deli.
Offices are no longer the grey corporate sadness that lowered morale; it’s all about inspiring the staff who are the heart of any business. And, the idea works; It boosts morale and efficient productivity, which are evident in the business success. All because staff are free to be themselves in comfortable environments that meet their needs.
Small business owners don’t need to feel like they’re missing the chance to take clients to amazing offices that suit their brands, and promote an identity for their companies. Shared office space, where you can rent hot seats and all office amenities, give smaller entrepreneurs the opportunity to connect with like-minded people, and meet clients in a stylish and functional environment.
Contact Work & Co today for shared office space that boasts style, functionality and an awesome view.
© Work & Co. 2020.