Take a moment to think about how your office functions. Do your employees have the space, resources, and freedom they need to produce consistent results in an environment that fosters creativity, collaboration, and the ability to focus? Maybe? If you can’t answer a definitive yes, your business could probably benefit from a workplace strategist.
We live in a world where the fanciest, hippest, and most modern tech and digital offices manage to consume all of the spotlight as ideal spots to work, but the majority of all small and medium sized organizations can benefit from tweaks a workplace strategist makes because the real world operates with productivity, satisfaction and balance in mind. A cafe would be nice, sure, but so would a happy, optimized workforce who have creativity and drive on lock.
In this post, we’re outlining all the reasons why your business could benefit from a workplace strategist.
What is Workplace Strategy?
So what is workplace strategy? It’s the dynamic alignment of your businesses working patterns with its environment to help enable peak performance, while simultaneously lowering costs.
Workplace strategy may mean helping reach company goals – like reaching a sales milestone, improving brand perception and performance, merging two merging company cultures, or relocating a business altogether. The strategy itself will typically focus on ways to use a space more effectively and efficiently, revamping ideas on how to adjust layouts, maximize adaptability and flexibility, or ways to adjust to an entirely new mode of working – depending on the ideal changes.
How Do Workplace Strategists Work?
Workplace strategists work by developing plans of attack for individual businesses by witnessing and making adjustments to work environment layouts, attitudes, and cultures. They attempt to realign factors within an office environment that may contribute to weakened results, or poor morale – like office mobility, sustainability, wellness and well being, technology, talent and customer attraction, and brand experience.
By asking who wants what, and finding common ground between the business, workforce, and the capabilities of the facility, workplace strategists align different interests to different departments and factors within an office. For example:
A business typically values:
Employees typically value:
- The ability to collaborate
The facility needs to embody:
On top of these departmental features, workplace strategists employ two main modes of thought to connect and align values between multiple departments – objective/prescriptive as re-creation, and subjective/emergent as creation and/or interpretation – giving multiple people excellent reasons to fight for the same values.
Why You Need Them
Workplace strategists need find common ground by uniting the values of the business to that of the workplace — by connecting needs like innovation and productivity to the desires of the workforce – to be more creative and to enjoy their work more.
This means finding ways to align the values of the workforce with that of the businesses goals – by using the environment itself to create a re-imagined collaboration space that uses technology to help communicate new ideas. In short, the workplace strategist has been able to link the office environment to its people in a meaningful way to harness the desire for job satisfaction and independence in the workforce, to a main business goal of the organization.
They Understand Activity-Based Working
Activity Based Working (ABW) is a specific workplace strategy wherein staff are given the choice between a plethora of different working spaces to accommodate different styles of tasks. This means allowing them to adapt their space according to the type of work they need to complete, and removes them from a stagnant environment of designated working stations.
When employees have access to multiple environments, they’re able to choose a space that best personifies their working style that supports productivity. This is a very popular workplace strategy for fresh start-ups, who value innovation and employee autonomy through fluidity. When employees are able to find their own space to fuel their working efforts, businesses win by supporting efficiency, and employees win by feeling trusted and capable to meet demands on their own terms.
A streamlined workplace that flows well with the business itself, and the employees who deliver hard work each day, is key to improving productivity and efficiency – and it doesn’t mean investing in an expensive office renovation – rather, it means listening to the advice of a workplace strategist to invest in things like video conference tech in boardrooms, white boards in collaborative spaces, and connectivity in break rooms and common areas to encourage mobility. This balance and fluidity is critical to a business; balance translates directly to functionality, and functionality translates into directly into productivity.