Start-Up Solutions is a series that explores some of the common problems I’ve encountered in three years of designing offices for start-ups - and provides practical pointers for constructing work spaces that, well, really work.
Problem: When it comes down to it, who really wants to sit at their desk all day? A stale, same-old work environment lacks energy, which ultimately — unfortunately — affects output.
Solution: Think beyond the predictable desk-and-chair, and designate areas that offer employees a variety of settings in which to do their work. I figure, if workers are given an option to switch things up throughout the day, they're less likely to lose focus — and more likely to stay inspired. As an example, New York City co-working space Neuehouse does a great job providing its clients with a wide selection of work space setups. In addition to communal tables, sofas, and arm chairs, there's stadium seating near the entrance, which is a perfect place for casual conversations and catch-up (and it's also great for those who simply need to stretch their legs). I also love to create private lounge areas for workers who need occasional quiet. But to be honest, any nook or cranny in an office is fair game — even the kitchen can be designed to serve as a sort of cafe-turned-work-space. Be creative!