Flexibility and Camaraderie in the Workplace
Flexibility and camaraderie are two fundamentals that are key for healthy workplace culture in 2022. Our Design and Business Development teams share what smart companies are doing right now to support both ideals. In this blog they also share what they learned at recent commercial real estate events that covered these two topics extensively with industry thought leaders.
[ flek-suh-bil-i-tee ]
the quality of being easily adapted or of offering many different options
Flexibility at work has been getting a lot of attention post-pandemic. Why? It’s something people are interested in, and downright demanding in job interviews. How is workplace flexibility different than hybrid or remote work? Our Director of Business Development Kate Grumbles explained it like this.
“Flexibility is about choice in all aspects of your day while still meeting and surpassing individual and team goals,” said Grumbles.
Infinity Group Client Relations Manager Kristen Sacchitella said, “It’s about working from anywhere, and working from the office when it makes sense for collaboration.”
“The modern professional wants options. The companies that are winning at this are creating memorable collaboration spaces and loosening up about remote work,” said Client Relations Manager Catherine Woods.
So, what does an example of a memorable space look like? Look at the space our integrated Infinity Group team created for Xmondo in the Greater New York City area.
We helped XMONDO grow into a larger space, and we did it with a design and build project that is undeniably theirs. With cost and schedule certainty, this e-commerce company could allow their creativity to run wild in a fantastically responsible way.
“Individual work is done in the open office. Acoustical dividers and planters create visual privacy and help with sound dampening while still preserving the sense of openness. The mix of open and closed collaboration rooms provide colorful, comfortable spaces for teammates to have meetings and brainstorming sessions,” said Laura Tremko, Director of Design at Infinity Group.
Flexibility is in the eye of the beholder.
“Everybody talks about flexibility and the real question is what does flexibility mean to you? It might be helpful to stay flexible about how you define flexible. Do you have enough flexible physical office space for your people? Is your furniture and layout convertible and flexible? Some people need flexible lease terms. This new phase of work is all about fluidity,” said Grumbles.
And everything about flexibility can serve camaraderie. Here’s how.
[ kah-muh-rah-duh-ree, -rad-uh-, kam-uh- ]
a spirit of trust and goodwill among people closely associated in an activity or endeavor
Culture is key
It’s also one of those things that can be hard to identify or measure, but you know when it’s not there.
“You can have the coolest space, best benefits, tons of time off, but if the culture doesn’t bring people together, it won’t matter,” said Grumbles.
“We’re seeing companies enhance or overhaul their spaces to make them all about collaboration. That means heads down work is done remotely,” said Woods.
“Your physical space can help foster camaraderie or it can be a place where it breaks down. That’s where the importance of a good interior designer comes in,” said Tremko.
Make your space irresistible
“If you want to see your space activated in 2022 and beyond, you have two options: Mandate that all workers return to offices, or make your office irresistible. Of course, we recommend the second option because it’s more inclusive and will inspire your people to return,” said Tremko.
Woods said, “We see clients creating a corporate space that takes cues from all the comforts of home and then adds in something you can’t have at home. Think fantastic amenities, high end latte machines, a rooftop deck with a city view, maybe an outdoor gas fire pit for happy hours, and charging stations for electric cars.”
Our Infinity Group Business Development team recently attended Bisnow events in Phoenix and Boston. And these topics of workspace flexibility and camaraderie were covered.
Sacchitella said,” One of my favorite key takeaways from the conferences is that the ‘office is not dead, it’s just changing’. And we see that playing out with so many of our corporate and portfolio clients.”
“People in leadership positions want to know what other smart companies are doing. What they’re doing is investing in options for their people and getting clearer than ever before about why we gather,” said Tremko.
Want to get even more insights from our team? Contact us today to get the conversation going.