September 24, 2019
The BBC recently published a piece on its website to commemorate the 40th Anniversary of Ridley Scott’s movie Alien and what it could tell us about office design and office life. One of the interesting points raised in the piece was how the depiction of the conditions on board the spaceship Nostromo did away with the gloss and swish of previous visions of the future, replaced by grime, exposed services and strictly utilitarian interiors. The environment was one of the characters, a trick Ridley Scott later repeated in Bladerunner. More →
September 23, 2019
There’s a good reason why we find it hard to establish the causal links between our working lives, office design and our personal happiness. It’s because it’s all very complicated. So complicated in fact that you can sidetrack any discussion on the subject by asking elementary questions such as: ‘what do you mean by happy?’ or ‘should it be the role of work to make us happy?’ More →
September 20, 2019
One of the most talked about solutions to the UK’s seemingly intractable productivity deficit is the application of new technology. And as we begin to address the first challenges and opportunities presented by the Fourth Industrial Revolution, it grows more apparent each day that this is not merely a macro-economic issue, but something that affects us at an organisation and personal level too.
September 19, 2019
The story goes that, when Rem Koolhaas was appointed to design the McCormick Tribune Campus Center at the Illinois Institute of Technology in 2003, the legendary architect noticed how students had created their own pathways between the buildings as they had made their way around the site. The site of the new building included a field on which their footprints had worn down the grass to such an extent that distinct grooves had been carved out that reflected their movements.
September 18, 2019
A recent report from AWA, Global Workplace Analytics and Haworth identified that over half of those surveyed in 130 organisations work in assigned positions. What was more interesting – than the report was the positioning of the key findings – the message being that in many respects organisations were denying their people the full benefits of an agile (or activity-based – we’ll use agile here) workplace, the blunted old farts.
September 17, 2019
It’s interesting to watch what happens when politicians – even more so than normal people – are faced with evidence they don’t like. And it’s especially interesting when they asked for the evidence in the first place. You can pick your own examples but it was interesting to note Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell’s immediate and decidedly lukewarm response to his own report into the wisdom of introducing a 4 day week, which concluded that the idea is ‘not realistic or even desirable’. More →
September 17, 2019
The BBC, Monzo and Skyscanner are the companies UK top tech talent wants to work for the most according to new research from Hired which has today released its annual Brand Health Report. However, despite the UK’s flourishing tech landscape, British business are not featured on the global list of the top 15 private or public companies indicating that UK brands are losing popularity. This is especially worrying at a time when 60 percent of London firms apparently anticipate a ‘Brexit Brain Drain’. More →
September 16, 2019
Women are a key part of a growing contingent workforce of freelancers, consultants and part-timers. Despite numerous government policies to attract more mothers back into the workplace, retention is still a significant struggle. Several data collected indicates working mums who return part-time, combining professional careers with raising a family, are increasingly frustrated. The research shows that the modern workplace often fails to cater for the needs of mothers and carers as they face the pressures of combining busy working lives with lifestyle and family obligations.
September 13, 2019
A new study from University of South Australia PhD student Bridgette Minuzzo suggests that workplace art that depicts natural imagery can improve levels of wellbeing even in offices that lack windows. Minuzzo installed nature-themed artworks at three university campuses and a hospital in Adelaide, measuring the mental wellbeing of participants beforehand and after. More →
September 10, 2019
If you’ve ever shopped around for a coworking space, you’ve undoubtedly heard every shared workspace operator brag that its offices aren’t just a place to work – they’re all about community and culture. As Fast Company’s Ruth Reader put it, we’re just a “bunch of co-work startups saying the same things about how different [we] are.” She’s not entirely wrong, but (with all due respect) I think she’s missed the point about coworking.
September 10, 2019
Technology is always remarkable in its own time, indistinguishable from magic for an increasingly fleeting moment before the stardust fades and it becomes mundane, subverted by our unintended uses, its own unintended consequences and the very way it inveigles itself into the background of our existence, blurring identities, changing the way we view ourselves and others and shattering the compartments into which we once found it easy to separate the different parts of our lives.
September 10, 2019
Nearly half of British employees (48 percent) don’t think the design of their workplace encourages innovation and creativity, an Oktra and YouGov survey claims. According to the report, 72 percent of employees would be more committed to or happier in a company if they felt inspired by its office design. More →