Workspring, Applied Research & Consulting by Steelcase, and Serendipity Labs recently hosted two 360 Workplace Strategy Summits in Chicago and New York bringing in key thought leaders to help uncover the complexities of the workplace. The goal of the summit was to help business leaders gain new strategies and insights on real estate and the workplace and help organizations thrive in an era of unprecedented complexity and volatility.
Attendees and speakers engaged in lively conversations around best practices and new workplace strategies. “These types of forums are an excellent venue to converse with peers and to learn from one another,” Marilyn Simeone, director of global planning and design at a financial institute, shares.
Throughout the sessions, participants tackled issues of how to develop better strategies to embrace rapid workplace changes, how to support employee wellbeing and drive the business forward, and other unique issues that organizations are facing today.
Here are 5 key takeaways from the 360 Workplace Strategy Summit:
#1 Live, play and work. Live, play and work has become increasingly important for people. It’s integral for companies to integrate these three elements in the workplace.
As the line between what’s “inside” the corporate domain and what’s “outside” the corporate domain continues to fray, there are seven words that are reshaping real estate:
Kent Holliday, Consulting Services & Portfolio Strategies at CRESA New York
#2 Embrace Technology. Technology platforms and tools have advanced our communication; it is the enabler for new ways of working. As forward thinkers and leaders, we must embrace this change. – Dan Johnson, Workplace Innovation Lead at Accenture Workplace Solutions
#3 When we have a choice in our work environment, we become more productive.
Work and place has separated. Technology has enabled us to work almost anywhere. However, organizational culture continues to remain the tether that dictates where we work. Unless we relinquish the mindset of corporate offices and desks, the value of new designs and technological innovations will remain marginalized. – Steve Adams, Director of Workplace Strategy at PwC
#4 Understand the culture and motivations to create community and belonging.
By understanding the culture and motivations behind the people that constitute any organization, we can better align our goals as facilities enablers and help our organizations stay efficient. Workplace is not just about furniture and spatial layouts, it’s also about creating community and belonging. – Jerome Goh, Senior Content Director at IDEO
#5 Workplace is about people.
A shift is occurring in the workplace today towards higher autonomy with a greater focus on the value of interaction. To build a strong and unique culture, organizations need to proactively build community with friendly and familiar faces by adding experience coordinators or office managers. They are as important as any physical infrastructure. They are the software to the environment’s hardware, a consistent fabric in an inconsistent workplace.
Workplace is about people. There can be meetings about efficiencies and optimization, but in the end we need to design for the individuals who are using the spaces. Workplace design requires coordination and collaboration from Information Technologies, Human Resources and C-level Leadership to be truly effective. – Lawrence Abrahamson, Design Lead at IDEO
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