Founder & CEO, Thirdway
The landscape of workspace design has rarely undergone such a seismic shift as in recent years.
No longer simply a place to work, the workplace is now an infrastructure for building social capital and fostering a sense of purpose and belonging.
Workplace shift, culture lift
According to the Oxford Dictionary, an office is ‘a room, set of rooms or building where people work, usually sitting at desks.’ But this definition should be redefined to something that is much more in keeping with today’s requirements. The working environment must now be an engaging, purposeful space that encourages collaborative working, vibrant company culture, enhanced productivity and overall happier people who produce a better standard of work than ever before.
How to redefine the ‘of**ce’
We believe the definition should be ‘A designed space where an organisation’s engagement, collaboration, culture and productivity are enhanced via its people, to achieve stated objectives and goals.’It’s a definition that does not restrict or limit the way we work but instead empowers a workforce to be the best that they can be.
Hybrid working is here to stay, yet its shape is shifting, as soaring energy prices and a desire to socialise add to the appeal of the workplace.
We are committed to creating the future of the working environment. Our belief in this mission is resolute, and as such we have trademarked the term “Redefining the O Word” – campaigning for the Oxford and Cambridge Dictionary to change their definition of the word to reflect the industry’s current ambitions for the workplace.
Crisis accelerates change
Hybrid working is here to stay, yet its shape is shifting, as soaring energy prices and a desire to socialise add to the appeal of the workplace. But to meet modern expectations, the workplace needs to prove its worth when compared to working from home, with better amenity provision playing a key role.
Living and working more sustainably is also a driver. Natural materials and local manufacturers are very much ‘in,’ with many firms pushing for stylish refurbished and reclaimed items, from statement furniture pieces to artworks. At a macro level, there is an emphasis on updating and adapting commercial premises, rather than knocking buildings down and starting afresh.
When implemented well, intelligent design reinforces and supports new working practices, enhancing creativity, and in turn, making people happier and more productive. Savvy businesses will recognise the workspace as an essential tool for businesses to attract and retain high-calibre employees in this shifting marketplace.
We just need to redefine it.