Last week, PivotDesk teamed up with the crew at Work Awesome, to host a dinner party centered around the concept of the ‘Future of Work.’
We were lucky enough to have a group of dinner guests providing different perspectives spanning many industries — from Commercial Real Estate to Music.
Following dinner, we had in informal roundtable discussion where each guest stood answered the questions “Why do we still need an office?” and “How is the office environment changing?” from their own experiences.
Here’s a look at what they had to say:
The Office is the New Church
A majority of the attendees agreed that in a time where many people dedicate their lives to their work, the office remains a productive place for socializing and finding friends amongst colleagues. Sharing in the same daily stresses and victories creates a bond that is only enhanced in an office setting. And many felt that working from home or remotely can often become isolating.
Another frequent theme that came up was the fact that the office also allows for and encourages collaboration. Brainstorming and bouncing ideas off of colleagues or others within your office is known to improve creativity. While dinner guests agreed that working amongst others was good for their creative process, their opinions differed on the level of productivity within an office.
Those who focus on computer engineering and coding, and those in the journalism industry feel that an open office environment is often distracting and reduces their productivity. And many felt that when it comes to actually executing projects, a quiet isolated environment is preferred. This is why flexibility within office space is key in supporting all team members appropriately.
When asked about the importance of the physical workplace, one of the guests made a point about the physical act of getting ready for the work day in relation to productivity. While many of us have the ability to accomplish just as much at home in pajamas as we do in the office, the truth is many of us don’t.
Whether you wear jeans and a t-shirt to work, or a suit and tie, everyone agreed that the act of getting ready puts us in the right mindset to get sh*t done. This is an extremely simple, but often overlooked truth in the argument of working from home vs. working in the office.
While not everyone felt getting ready and going to a physical office is imperative to remaining productive, the overwhelming majority did.
Email is still annoying
We all work really hard every day to get to inbox 0. Unfortunately, that task becomes increasingly difficult when team members are working remotely and/or from home. Those who worked in journalism felt strongly that the ability to lean over and have a 3 minute conversation, can eliminate entire email threads over the course of the day. In addition, another dinner guest pointed out that often times when a team member works from home, they subconsciously want to prove they are accomplishing a lot. You guessed it, this means more emails.
Overall, while most of us can accomplish our tasks from home with the help of technology, the office environment is very much still alive and thriving.
The modern workplace is changing fast...
Are you keeping up?