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What is a Collaborative Work Space?
As a business, you will invest a lot of time and money in creating an office environment that is pleasant and inviting. It sets the tone for your business and ties in with company values. Collaborative workspace is the buzzword of the moment but what does it actually mean?
HINT: it is not just knocking walls down or doing away with cubicles! It is about creating an environment where people can’t help but talk and work together. It is about creating a space that is still warm and welcoming, where people can choose to work on their own but when communication and working together needs to happen, the stage is set.
The Age-Old Problem
“Let’s just find a quiet space to talk’ or “I’ll book a room for a meeting, is 4 pm next Friday OK?” It is an age-old problem and one that could be damaging your business. Your people need to talk to each other and work together because isn’t that the best way of working? Isn’t that the best way for your business to grow and evolve?
If you want your people to get together and create stunning solutions to problems, or be creative in designing your next product or service, you need a collaborative workspace. But it is not just knocking walls down. It is something more than that…
Create opportunities to interact
In many office spaces, the opportunity to interact is limited either by culture (how people ‘chatting’ is viewed) and the physical landscape of the office. Thus, opportunities to talk to colleagues are usually social times such as meeting ‘by chance’ in the canteen or the staff kitchen, the locker room and so on. Collaboration starts with re-designing the flow of the office so that staff have the necessary tools and space to work in certain areas.
Scrub the ‘one person, one desk rule
Now, this takes some doing as people have traditionally always been territorial about their desks, much as they are about their parking space. This means that for many businesses, a radical re-think and re-design of their office space. And this is where the design team at Komandor would come in. Energy needs to flow as much as the space itself so ditch that format that everyone has to have a desk and create a plethora of workspace options.
Blend Digital with "Analogue"
The old analogue signal may have been switched off but it is a good word to describe the things that you and your staff do on a regular basis – from writing out a plan on paper to have a face-to-face conversation, a chat on the phone and so on. These tangible or analogue activities need to be able to blend with the digital world of the office.
A Blend of Open and Enclosed Spaces
Sometimes, people just need to get their heads down so that they meet a deadline. Or maybe they need to work in their own space for a while. There is a need for a blend of workspaces. Not everyone wants to work curled up on a sofa, some people prefer a desk etc.
Collaborative workspaces are essentially about people being more social. This may fill you with dread because you may think that not a lot of work will get done. And this brings us nicely to trust: are you trusting enough that a collaborative workspace will really work for you?