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How to Change Your Office Environment from Average to Spectacular-on a Budget

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Creative office design on a budget

What would you think if you were called average? My guess is that if you are like most of us, you might be repulsed by the thought. I would imagine that a large percentage of people, at least in their minds, see themselves as special or above-average. Average just seems so…well…boring. Conversely, I would also guess that a certain percentage of us wouldn’t really care one way or the other.

Successful businesses don’t do average

I’ll say one thing for sure: if you want to run a successful business, being average just doesn’t cut it anymore. As businesspeople, we must continually demonstrate separation from the next competitor in order to survive in a rapidly-changing world. Otherwise, there’s no real reason for customers to come to us, is there?

The majority of systems and products are currently designed to keep people average. Anyone who has lived within the past century or so has been unavoidably impacted by the Industrial Revolution. In order for companies to sell an enormous quantity of anything, it needs to be a certain, size, color, and price in order to fit the mold for the average person.

The marketplace promotes average

Henry Ford spotted a gap in the market for a mass-produced car that the average person could afford. The Model T was launched in 1908, and sold for nearly 20 years, in the same color: black. Ford’s philosophy was twofold: he found a way to improve upon the automobile, and to sell it for less. The concept of mass-production has been the foundation of almost every industry on the planet since. The overriding theme? To find ways to make products available to average people.

Somewhere along the line, we connected the dots and decided that average was better—either because we believed it could offer a lower price than the alternative, or because it was more available—take your pick. For the most part, Americans now shop at the same stores, buy the same stuff, and wear the same clothes. We pretty much do what manufacturers tell us to do. The only major line of distinction is price.

Changing a company from average

It’s no longer a surprise to walk into company after company, only to discover that each one looks, feels, and smells just like the one next door. How can you change that? The trick, first and foremost, is to find ways to let your personality and company culture shine through in the details. This requires thought, planning, and creativity. Here are some quick pointers:

Before you begin any design project, you first need to know what the problems are. You can then conceptualize ways to incorporate as many reasonable solutions into the design as possible, while still keeping sight of your budget.

Living example

Here’s an example. We recently got called into a local higher-education facility to consult, design, and manufacture furniture for their classrooms. Here are the challenges we discovered:

  • They had a reasonably low budget.
  • They wanted a very modern, cool, Google-esque look to their classroom (style).
  • They wanted to maximize the number of students they could fit into each classroom without crowding (ROI).
  • Each student needed to have their own computer, but it could not be bolted onto the desktop, because this would obstruct visibility with the monitor in use (function).
  • The computers could not be placed on the floor, for fear they would become damaged or disappear (security).
  • Each student needed a comfortable amount of workspace.
  • Each workplace needed to be powered (technology).
  • Each station needed to have modesty panel protection for female students (practicality).

The challenges were clear. We designed and manufactured cool, modern, custom desks in a black and white design using cost-effective materials. The desks were shared by two/three students, with a designed compartment underneath for computers that would also separate the students. The size was balanced between maximum room dimensions and maximum student/use requirements.

As illustrated in the case above, it is usually impossible to get the best fit, color, function, and style for your workplace by “thinking average.” Because they were willing to think inside a bigger box, the school was able to get everything they wanted—plus an allowance for six more students per class. WOW! What ROI!

Your office doesn’t have to cost a lot to be above average, just creative


 
Common wood pallets arranged and used effectively changed this office from bland to unique.

Effective use of common ordinary cardboard and white laminate changed this lunchroom from boring to spectacular.  

I could certainly say more to help you customize your office and make it even more spectacular—but that is a conversation for forthcoming reports.

Summary

Little ideas like these can separate your company from the average, in function, style, fit, organization, and yes—even profits.

The best part of advance creation of a spectacular workplace profile is the ease with which you can go back and look at your problem areas, tweaking issues as they arise. As you begin noticing areas of possible concern, you can continue to refine details until you have the perfect solution. It’s that simple.

Imagine how spectacular your workplace could be with more information and better tools. The possibilities are infinite!  

What about you?  Would you like more ideas about how you can gain traction away from the average business environment?
CALL NOW 855-699-0334!

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Bernie provided a great alternative to higher-priced designs. The product looks great, installation was easy, delivery on-time, and very close to estimated total cost. Pleasure to work with Bernie.

Mark Feinberg
Mar 25, 2016