October 12, 2018
October 11, 2018
Sitting is so culturally ingrained at work, at the wheel, in front of the TV and at the movies, it takes a great effort to imagine doing these things standing up, let alone pedalling as you work at a bike desk. So, when the world’s first specific guidelines on sitting and moving at work were published, they generated headlines such as: Abandon your chair for four hours to stay healthy, office workers are told and: Stand up at your desk for two hours a day, new guidelines say. But what many media reports did not mention was the guidelines were based on limited evidence. They were also co-authored by someone with commercial links to standing desks (desks you raise and lower to work at standing or sitting), a link not declared when the guidelines were first published in a journal. Media reports also overplayed the dangers of sitting at work, incorrectly saying it wiped out the benefits of exercise. Our new study reveals the nature of this media coverage and its role in overselling sit-stand desks as a solution to inactivity at work.
October 10, 2018
Because collaboration, creativity and innovation are increasingly perceived as key objectives and differentiators of performance, the genesis and mechanisms behind ideation and creativity are an an integral part of both business and personal development. As a consequence, there is growing interest in the way the physical attributes of work settings may influence or even trigger creative behaviour. The cliché of the shower as one of these favourite places comes to mind and yet experience does show that the idea of seeking a setting, a “zone” if you will, for a specific purpose is intuitively right. This needn’t be a retreat or cocoon, as is often assumed, but can also be a crowded, busy, noisy place, which might explain why so often the most animated work conversations move out of the office shop into the coffee shop. Equally, highlight events or special meetings tend to be held in a “venue’, often dressed for the occasion.
October 5, 2018
October 2, 2018
The improvement in well-being and performance in the workplace are economic and social critical factors since the loss of productivity for companies means a cost of up to US$ 550,000 million per year. Numerous studies affirm that biophilic design, defined as a response to the inherent need of human beings to be in contact with nature, in the workplace improves productivity and user well-being. As Lord Kelvin said, if you cannot measure it, you cannot improve it, so the challenge that arises is how to objectify and quantify rigorously the features that improve productivity and wellbeing in spaces designed with biophilia in mind. From this, it is necessary to go a step further and objectify the design criteria serving as an operator for performance and wellbeing in design practice.
October 1, 2018
There was a curious addition to a 2016 report on the Top 10 Technologies Driving the Digital Workplace from tech researchers Gartner. It wasn’t a technology at all but rather a slightly obscure office design concept that originated in Hamburg in the late 1950s, but which tells us a lot about how we work in the 21st Century office, according to Gartner. Its history lies with the German consulting firm Quickborner. Led by the brothers Eberhard and Wolfgang Schnelle, the firm applied the egalitarian principles of the post war world and rejection of the scientific management theories that had created the familiar factory-like rows of desks that had come to dominate open plan offices to create something more in tune with the new age.
September 29, 2018
In this week’s Newsletter; The commercial property sector heads off in a new direction; why busier people tend to look after themselves more; executives love Big Data but have no idea what to do with it; procrastination isn’t all bad – read why right now, don’t put it off; changing benhaviour by design isn’t as easy as some might think; a Shakespearean take on tech addiction; and how local innovation fuels global design trends. You can also download our most recent briefings on key topics, produced in partnership with Boss Design and BW Workplace Experts; dowlnload the new issue of Work&Place; visit our events page curated by Herman Miller, follow us on Twitter and join our LinkedIn Group to discuss these and other stories. And don’t forget to subscribe – the form is there on the left.
September 26, 2018
Many of us will have returned to work with a long to-do list, a new set of goals and a commitment not to repeat the same mistakes we have in the past. It’s likely that we will have promised ourselves to stop putting things off. On our hit list of the foibles we most want to dispose of, procrastination will be somewhere near the top. The problem is that because procrastination is linked to psychological factors such as an innate preference to do something we deem pleasurable to something we don’t, modern life encourages us to do it. more…
September 23, 2018
The failure of flexible working + Bridging the workplace gap + The uncomfortable truth about sitting
In this week’s Newsletter; how half of all our tasks will be performed by AI sooner than you might think; LinkedIn’s new London offices; the great failure of flexible working; Steelcase’s latest acquisition; Europe’s first building to achieve the WELL Platinum standard; Jonathan Hindle on improving workplace interactions; Jim Ware on finding the right place to meet; and Chris Kane on how to bridge the gap between people and places in a modern context. You can also download our most recent briefings on key topics, produced in partnership with Boss Design and BW Workplace Experts; visit our events page curated by Herman Miller, follow us on Twitter and join our LinkedIn Group to discuss these and other stories.
September 21, 2018
September 21, 2018
The world of work is changing rapidly and profoundly in a way that we haven’t seen since the time of the industrial revolution. Yet even as we stand at a momentous, game-changing inflexion point, the 21st century workplace strategy sector is still dithering about whether to join in the revolution. They are like the industrial mill owners of 19th century England who adopted a ‘make do and mend’ approach to business and failed to invest in new technology only to be forced out of business by foreign competitors who had invested in radical new, state of the art technology.Today the technological game changer is digital technology rather than weaving technology, but the effect is the same. Unless the workplace strategy sector embraces change and builds bridges between the ‘people’ side of the business and the ‘place’ side with other workplace specialists, their industry will become as dead as a dodo.
September 19, 2018
Every physical setting sends distinct signals to meeting participants – signals that set the tone and provide a context for the conversation, even when they are subtle or not in anyone’s conscious awareness. You understand instinctively that the place where a meeting occurs has an impact on the nature of the conversation. Just imagine the difference between a conversation around a large formal conference table with expensive executive chairs and one that takes place in an informal employee lounge, with the participants seated in a circle on soft bean-bag chairs. more…