October 29, 2018
You can’t judge an international marketplace by wandering around an exhibition of its products for a day or two. This is a simple fact overlooked by a new piece in Dezeen which declares that desks are finished. This notion is based on a trip to the Orgatec furniture fair in Cologne. Our own review of the show will appear tomorrow, with the hysteria dialled down to a dull roar and with some added facts about what organisations actually buy most from office furniture companies (spoiler: desks and chairs) compared to what makes the sector more interesting.
October 22, 2018
What to make of the announcement that Chengdu is thinking of creating an artificial moon so that it can do away with street lights, bathing the city’s streets in permanent dusk? Well possibly a big thumbs up for the ingenuity and maybe thumbs down for the impact on people’s circadian rhythms and awareness of what’s in the heavens. People really should look up more, both figuratively and literally. Maybe there’s also room for a thought about we we can over-complicate designed solutions when we look to innovate beyond a certain point.
October 16, 2018
Flexibility is rocking the foundations of the traditional commercial real estate world. It’s entering our workforces, our offices and the shock waves are extending to the relationship between landlord and tenant. This demand for increased flexibility from the world’s workforces is due to a convergence of social and economic factors. JLL’s Top 10 Global Corporate Real Estate (CRE) Trends report predicts the emergence of a more dynamic workforce, demand for work environments that support creativity, cross-collaboration and innovation, and an increasing focus on employee wellbeing and performance will dominate global CRE strategies throughout 2018. This has major implications for both occupiers and landlords.
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 standing 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.
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 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.