Category Archives: Workplace Strategies

Workplace Strategy is the dynamic alignment of an organization’s work patterns with the work environment to enable peak performance and reduce costs… Anika Ellison Savage

Creating A Great Workplace For A Multigenerational Workforce

Helpful tips for a great workplaceToday’s office workplace is rapidly changing. Work is becoming more of what we do and less of where we are. What can you do to create a great workplace for your company? Here are several ideas that can help you.

First off, one of the tools being used in this change is that of office hoteling. It is where those who do not need a full time desk space simply login and reserve a space when needed, resulting in savings of up to 40% in real office space costs.

As the office space workplace goes more and more mobile, with employees working wherever is convenient, it becomes necessary to recruit and retain the most motivated employees. If workers are not self-motivated, the system can easily be abused. Today’s younger workforce, however, is used to and prefers the idea of being mobile. When pay is tied to performance, they can and will perform for your business and be happier while do it. They are also more focused on the work-life balance where this type of Officing strategy fits in well.

Once great part of the changing workplace is that, depending on the type of business you operate, hours can be flexible to accommodate the life-work balance necessary to keep the best employees happy. Many areas of business, for example office space, often lend themselves to hours outside the traditional 9-5 pattern. The flexible worker can maintain balance by planning errands such as auto service or simply relaxing over a long breakfast by simply notifying their employer that their day will have altered hours. That two hours spent in the evening doing revenue-generating work can be taken off during the day instead of being considered overtime.

Employees today move from job to job rapidly, each time moving up in salary and position. In order to keep the very best on your staff, you must be flexible with them as well as expecting them to be flexible with your needs. The increased work-life balance priority is related to shifts in workplace priorities since many workers will spend as much as 95% of their time away from the traditional office space.

Values sought by today’s worker in terms of work-life balance include respect and trust from the employer. Family concerns being respected by the boss is critical. They want some hours they can telework from home when needed or when desired and more control over their work schedule. Unless a company is willing to institute flexible work policies and programs, the brightest and best will move on to a company that better understands their wants and needs.

Assess what flexibility makes sense for your organization. Would an office hoteling reservation system allow you to reduce real estate footprint and help workers feel more empowered? Would accommodating telework from home when a child is sick or another emergency fit into your business? What other flexible options could you institute to keep your best employees happy and offer them a balance between family and life needs and employment requirements?

A properly planned office hoteling reservation system can save money and increase productivity. Contact us so we can get you started finding out how Office Hoteling might work for your company.

How Work Space Evolution Enhances Employee Performance

No matter what market your business serves, you know that profits are earned because of good, talented, employees working hard. Without these valued employees you would not have a thriving enterprise. And the better the team members perform the more your business will thrive.

So much of business performance today is knowledge-based work. People who have that knowledge and creativity are sought after by many companies and today’s workforce feel comfortable changing jobs several times in their career. This is so unlike our parents and grandparents where a person secured a job and stuck with that employer until they earned the gold watch at retirement.

Clearly, this means that those companies that are able to keep the talented knowledge employees happy will retain the talent longer than companies where employees do not feel valued, love their work and their work environments. When an organization can evolve to provide their team with practical options regarding where and sometimes even when work is performed, employees can choose work styles that best fit their personal needs.

One employee may work best in complete silence with no hustle and bustle around. That person may prefer to work from home, if the home office is quiet, several days per week and especially when performing more tedious tasks, coming into the office only as needed. This type of employee must be a self-starter who works well with little direction.

Another employee may thrive on the networking and sense of competition that the traditional office provides and prefer to come to the main office most days. These tend to be people who require a little more direction. While this employee will likely readily accept and implement technological advancements, they may be a bit hesitant when first making changes in processes to improve them.

Yet another type of employee may work best while on the move, working in third spaces such as cafes and internet hotspots while between meetings with clients. This type of working tends to be a real self-starter who has a strong dislike for the hassles of involved with reporting to a traditional office just for the sake of being seen. It is likely that this person will fully utilize each new technological development that makes their work faster and easier and embrace positive changes. This work style may involve some days spent at the office, some days where a few necessary minutes are spent at the office, and other days where all the day is spent working with clients or spots near the next client’s office.

An employer who can accommodate each of these types of employee will find it easier to retain talent and a high degree of production. When employees find they can work in whatever style suits them best for each specific goal or task, they are happier and feel empowered. Happy, empowered employees product more and stay with your company longer.

Six Factors That Can Help Turn Your Office Space Into a Great Workplace

Everyone wants a workplace that is wonderful but why is one workplace great while another is lacking? Is it the leased office space that makes a particular firm productive and profitable? Could it be the specific office furniture or location? None of these things alone make any workplace truly great.

A great workplace is not about the brand of computers, the prestige of the building’s address. Here are six factors that can work together to allow business owners to create an organization that excites employees, resulting in the reputation of being a great workplace.

  1. Replace Policies with Company Mission: Hiring, motivating and retaining top notch employees if not about policies; those are simply rules. Create a company mission and vision that the team believes in and supports. With passion for a mission based on the CEO’s vision, rather than a bunch of policy statements, cultivates a real team capable of leaping forward with ideas and innovations as well as loyalty and hard work.
  2. Nurture Collaboration: Never stifle team members’ desires to work together, carrying ideas from one area of the business into others. Create a workplace where each group or department is allowed to freely convey ideas to other organizational groups. The pay-off in productivity, amazing leaps forward and trained staff retention is incredible.
  3. Cultivate Agile Workspaces: Today’s office space is not the traditional cubicle or corner office. An office hoteling software application allows easy utilization of much smaller workspaces and allows each member of an organization to work in the style that is best for them. Technology allows the telecommuting or third place team members to only be physically in-office as needed. Work areas that provide desks or standing work counters allow team members to avoid the strain of sitting at a computer immobile for hours at a time. Staying in close contact does not have to mean being in the same conference room any longer. The office space of today is any area where business can conveniently and productively be conducted.
  4. Replace Ownership with Membership: Everyone employee is accountable to their customers and managers but in the past processes were “owned” by an employee, generating office stress and politics as power plays were often used to try to win the ownership role. Instead, remove the territorial nature of office spaces and encourage the concept of being privileged to be a member of a team or teams that create revenue and find ways for the company to save money. It becomes everyone’s process and fosters a sense of belonging and identity in the work environment.
  5. Create a Quality Experience for Employees: It is little surprise that employee retention is low in those workspaces that are dull and uninspiring. Create an office space that team members what to enter into and do work. Strive for a vibrant, magnetic space that draws people in during their in-office work time. This engages employees and they will look forward to the connected, exhilarated feeling obtained when they need to hotel an office space for an hour or a day.
  6. Stay on the Cutting Edge: Today’s fast paced, constantly changing economy allows those companies built on flexible office spaces with strong company values and loyalty to survive when others around them fall. As work methods, technological capabilities and mobile computing power speed along, use best practices to stay on the cutting edge. Remember that it’s the people who create value in a knowledge based company; an office is just a space that houses technology where people can come perform productive tasks.

These are some of the keys that can turn your office space into a great workplace for your employees, making them happier and more productive at the same time.

Four Generation Workplaces:
Why Different Management Styles are Necessary

For the first time in history, managers are faced with the requirements to effectively manage four different generations in the workplace. The future will likely continue to contain four generations even as those generations move along the timeline of life and business.

What Generations are Working Today?

According to the Age and Sex Composition, the generational breakdown of employees and managers today fall into these categories:

  1. Veterans born prior to 1946: This group makes up 2 percent of the workforce at the time of the census data collection and reporting in 2017.
  2. Baby Boomers born in the post-World War II years: This group is defined in the reports as those being born between 1946 and 1964 and make up 25  percent of the workforce.
  3. Generation X members, aka Gen Xers: are considered to be the segment born between 1965 and 1980 and make up 33 percent of the total workforce today and
  4. Millennial or Generation Y is the workforce members born after 1981 through present and total 40 percent of the total.

As time passes and the older generation disappear an additional, a younger generation will come of age so business will find it necessary to remain in touch with the remaining worker generations and develop ways to effectively work with the newer generations. Each generation has its own work style and lifestyle.  Managers need to understand what they need to do to encourage employee productivity. In the future and right now it is critical to learn to deal with the workers currently in the business world. This is crucial to producing profit and growth in any form of business.

Managing The High Maintenance Generation Y (Millennials)

The youngest group of employees in the workplace today is comprised of those born after 1981 and generally considered to be from before 2005s. This group is known as Generation Y or Millennials and they make up 40  percent of the total workforce according to Pew Research Center analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data. The American Society of Training and Development reported that during the next 20 years, 76 million workers will retire while only 46 million workers will enter the workforce to replace them. Most of these 46 million workers will be Millennial generation workers. Just as the three older generations in today’s workforce, Gen Y workers have unique desires and needs that they expect from their manager and the business for which they work.

Generation Y employees will be crucial to business enterprises. They will certainly change the way business is conducted in many ways. But, in currently and in the immediate future these employees offer great challenges to management to ensure these workers integrate with the existing workforce with as little conflict as possible.

Among the positive traits brought to the workforce, one of the major benefits that Millennials bring t the workplace is their high degree of technological skills. These employees were practically born with a computer in front of them and are intrigues by each and every development in the work of Information Technology.

Millennials grew up with digital global communication capability at their fingertips. Information of all kinds is expected to be immediatly available on demand. They understand using virtual teams to solve problems and are extremely team oriented.

Millennials view the business work as a global workplace, viewing the entire world as potential sources of information, clients, and community. Millennials seek fast-track career positions, frequent positive feedback, the latest technology and challenging training opportunities. Their outspokenness brings them to challenge long outdated work policies and conventions, offering businesses to perform a check on the hypocrisies and shortcomings of today’s workplace. Ultimately, Gen Yers may well drive change for the better.

Much has been said and published about the negative points of Millennials. They tend to have a sense of entitlement and are outspoken. This group of workers does not take constructive criticism well and require more direction and feedback from superiors than previous generations. Fortune magazine stated in its May 28, 2007 edition that this group are “the most high-maintenance, yet potentially most high-performing generation in history because its members are entering the workplace with more information, greater technological skill and higher expectations of themselves and others than prior generations.”  Additionally, Time’s July 16, 2007 edition stated that members of Generation Y want the kind of life balance where every minute has meaning; they don’t want to be slaves to their jobs as they feel their Baby Boomer parents were and often still are. Millennials also want employers to be socially responsible causes and allow for volunteer commitments through the use of flex-time or compensation time. Flexibility in work hours is important to this group of workers.

Yes, this generation requires a great deal of management, but it is well worth the effort to recruit them into your business They are smart and have the drive and creative thinking to make a real different in the business world and in a company’s profitability.

It is clear that recruiting Generation Y members and adjusting to their wants and needs will prepare industry for the entry of the next generation, people that are expected to be even more technology oriented. While this generation does not even yet have a “name”, it won’t be long before they begin entering the workforce and seeking employment in your company.

By understanding the four major groups into today’s workforce and providing for each group’s needs, effective employees can find their jobs satisfying and are more likely to remain with your business. Each group brings many positive aspects, all of which can be used effectively to gain greater efficiency and streamline operations to ensure profitability.

Managing the Baby Boomer Generation

Baby Boomers are those born in the post World War II years, from 1946 through 1964. This group makes up 25 percent of the current workforce per the Age and Sex Composition. These workers bring unique work styles into the work environment and require different management styles on the part of superiors. Currently they hold the majority of leadership positions in the workplace.

Like the veterans born before 1946, this group did not group up with technology as part of their childhood. Even during most of their higher education, computers were huge things that read punched cards or difficult to program units that could do less than our phones do today. Baby Boomers are, however, excited by technology and find adapting easier than the older generation. Most Boomers reach out for training to incorporate the newest techniques into their skills.

Baby Boomers value respect for their long service, skills, knowledge and managers will find recognition for Boomer’s wisdom is a key to successful integration of these workers and managers into the profitable organization. Managers of Boomers should honor the history and memories brought into the work environment because past experiences can bring understanding to current situations, providing positive outcomes. When policies are placed in a historical perspective, employees can often understand and accept more easily.

Baby Boomers find recognition extremely important. Whether recognized personally or publically, motivate Boomers through recognizing their accomplishment and clearly expecting superior outcomes from their efforts will help ensure happy Boomers. Embrace their best ideas and implement those into processes and methods.

Boomers tend to have conflict between their desire to compete on an individual basis and their desire to be part of a team. Encourage these workers to focus on the team in the short-term as an effective means to bring personal recognition and success for themselves in the long term.

Boomers also find conflict with the generation born before 1946 because the older generation tends to feel entitlement to perks on the job. Boomers often have the false feeling that those employees have not paid the dues they have to gain their positions. They also tend to find conflict with the younger generations coming into the workplace with high levels of technical expertise and feel they are unfairly competing with this generation that they view as “coddled”. By placing Boomers in mentoring positions, managers can often mitigate these negative feelings and generate feelings of teamwork and workplace “families”.

Managing the Veteran Generation

There are two groups in the workforce today who were born before 1946. Veterans of the Second World War make up about 2% of the employees, including managers, comprising the current workforce. This workforce group, sometimes called the Silent Generation, Greatest Generation, or Paper Agers, requires special management considerations.

The workers in this group were largely not exposed to technology and computers until these methods became a necessary part of the employment. Often they feel that due to their impending retirement they should not be required to move into the computer age. Because the work methods used early in their career were low-tech yet workable, they want to continue to use printed paper trails and other more familiar methods that they are comfortable with. Yet, the work environment has moved into high-tech and these workers are forced to adapt. Technology is the major hurdle for the generation of workers born prior to 1946. This can cause conflict between the Silent Generation and those born into the age where technology was part of their lives from childhood onward.

Paper Agers often feel that any information not presented in hard copy has little meaning. They find it difficult to conform to the paperless workplace. Their strong work ethics and “get it done” attitudes can add strength to teams and tasks assigned to be worked alone. This group of workers has no room for failure and drive toward success. They strive to please superiors in all their efforts and they do fine ways to adjust to technology when presented with training opportunities.

Often, veterans born prior 1946 find themselves in management positions because they are long-term employees and tend to be upwardly mobile in the organization chart. Their structured backgrounds lead them to have strong respect for hierarchy.  They build strong relationships based on loyalty, structure and time. They work well in management positions because they have been long exposed to experiences where information was provided on a “need to know” basis. This makes them able to keep information to themselves where necessary and provide information to the right parties when necessary. Their frugal natures make them capable of adhering to both budget and schedule.

It can be very difficult at times for younger managers to relate to the workers from this era. Frustration arises when the high-tech manager has to deal with their lack of native technical expertise, but they can excel in technical positions when provided necessary training. The younger manager may have grown up with high-tech and resents the cost and time required to train these workers in technology. Yet, the long-term work experience and lessons learned gained from these workers can lead to creative ideas that generate greater profit for the organization. Therefore, younger managers should be trained to value these workers and utilize their skills while providing growth opportunities through technical training.

Final Words

As you can see, there are many factors involved in creating a great workplace. Hopefully we have given you some ideas you can work with to enhance your business.

If you are looking for the right office space to create your great workplace, we’d love to help. It is what we do on a daily basis through out the US and Canada. Give us a try. No cost and no obligation. Let us know what you are looking for and we will get right on it.

What You Need to Know in Hiring Virtual Assistants

virtual assistantsAs a business owner, your prime objective is to make money. As the old adage goes, time is money, especially in business. Did you know that by attempting to perform every task related to the operation of your business yourself, it may be costing you up to 40% in lost revenue?

According to statistics by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), the average small business owner spends up to 40% of his or her time on routine administrative tasks. Also, business experts say, approximately 80% of your time should be focused exclusively on performing activities that create the most value and profits. The more time you can spend planning, strategizing, marketing, networking, and creating and delivering your revenue-producing products or services, the greater your business will grow and profit.

The demand for services from Virtual Assistants has seen a steady increase in recent years as business owners seek ways to run and grow their businesses using support services that are flexible and cost effective. Virtual Assistants can offer many benefits, but it can sometimes be difficult to differentiate those that are reputable from those that have set up to make easy money without the relevant experience, skills, or systems to do the job effectively.

In this article, you will learn about all the things you need in hiring virtual assistants:

  • What is a “Virtual Assistant” and what they can do and scopes of jobs they can deliver.
  • Legit platforms where you can hire virtual assistants
  • Screening the right VA for you.
  • Salaries and Fees

What is a Virtual Assistant?

According to Wikipedia, A virtual assistant or VA is generally self-employed and provides professional administrative, technical, or creative (social) assistance to clients remotely from a home office. Virtual assistants are in demand by entrepreneurs and online businesses that need support but don’t require or want to have their staff physically present in their work locations or offices.

What can they offer?

You might be wondering, what can a VA offer if they are miles away from you or from your business. With the technology that we have right now, nothing is impossible to get things done (except shred the paper).  Virtual Assistants works are not limited to administrative or clerical work, or as your Executive Assistant doing your admirative project from scheduling meetings, taking calls. There are a lot of VAs provide marketing, web design and IT support, social media management, project management and can even provide Customer Service or support for your customers via phones or email.  There are VAs too that can help you to manage finances, help you with Taxes, accounting or bookkeeping.

However, take note that just like the other normal employees in an office based set up, VAs has specific skill sets too. For example, a marketing or PR virtual assistant only does marketing or PR work, same goes with web developer and other fields. Other Virtual Assistants do a variety of duties but within a specific industry. On the other hand, there are Virtual Assistants that are flexible and can perform general administrative tasks to make your life easier, delegate tasks so to free up your time that will allow you to focus on the work that will make money.

How and where do we get a good one

First, you need to know what the tasks are you want to outsource.

The first step in hiring a virtual assistant is to make a list of the tasks you want to outsource. Make a complete list, prioritizing the activities you want to delegate first.  For example, if managing email takes up too much of time and tedious, put it at the top of your list. Or, maybe assisting your customers with their concerns is also important for your business, hiring an experienced customer service representative will be really a great help for you. You are spending too much time for your technical issues, search for someone who is an expert in IT or website management.

Next step is to determine who to hire. There are many ways to hire a Virtual Assistant. You can connect with an agency or a company that hires and trains and profiles them according to your requirements.  Going through an agency will save up time in sourcing, interviewing and screening your VA, agencies will also cover the works for the compensation for the VA. However, getting a VA via agencies might a little expensive than going through a freelance service.

Here are some of the top platforms in hiring freelance Virtual Assistants:

  1. Upwork

One of the largest marketplaces for projects. You can see all expertise, projects and you can see freelancers related to it. It has now 12 M registered freelancers and 5M registered clients. Can offer shorter/longer-term projects, from entry up to expert level.  Upwork has a tool to monitor the work and time spent by your VA then you will pay your VA through them.

  1. Onlinejobs.ph

One of the largest job board in the Philippines, with more than 250,000 members. Onlinejobs.ph is a subscription-based pricing model, where you will be subject for a fee to be able to contact the workers. You can do all the filtering and searching you want, but you can’t communicate with the workers until you pay. Here, you can arrange payment directly with your VA .

  1. PeoplePerHour

It offers all-around freelancers and outsourcing marketplace with a wide range of categories like Web Design, Video, Audio, Web Development, Sales & Marketing, Support, Writing, Translation, Social media, Software Development, Mobile Development.

  1. Guru

Another marketplace for finding VAs, they have a simple hiring process. Marketplace is smaller than the mentioned platforms though making it less competitive.

  1.  Freelancer.com

This could be possibly second best to Upwork.  According to their homepage, they have millions of businesses use them.

Rates and Fees

Virtual Assistants’ rates varies from $5 USD to $25 USD plus per hour. There are also factors that decide rates of freelance virtual assistant.

First is the location, hiring VA based is significantly higher than other part of the region.

Secondly is the experience, experienced VAs frequently charges more money than the beginner ones. That is why it is really important that you identify what task that you are going to offload, weather is a simple task that can be done by a fresh graduate or complicated one that needs someone who has an experience.

Another factor is the type of service or technical expertise, Virtual assistants with technical expertise in any software or application, such as programming, digital marketing are relatively charging hugely.

Use these as a guide when you are evaluating a Virtual Assistant. Determine if the rates are worth, probe they length of their experiences, seek testimonials from previous clients, or proof of their good work from past projects. Do you need who complete pro or maybe newbie that can perform the simple tasks. On a brighter side, you can always negotiate with reasonable rate, of course. Always ask nicely, they are doing these jobs for a living, so it is always within their right to say no. Come up with an arrangement that will work for both sides. If this doesn’t work and not a good fit, move on and jump to the next applicant.

To sum up, here are the Pros and Cons of having a Virtual Assistant.

PROS:

  • Makes your life easier. How great it is to know that you always have a helping hand.
  • Saves time (resulting to a healthy work-life balance)
  • Decreases stress level, beating deadlines or dealing with hard customers, pass it on!
  • Saves Money, significantly more cost efficient than hiring an in-house assistant.
  • Provides flexibility, VAs have flexible working hours, you can also work on a contract month-by-month basis, replace someone who’s not performing in just little amount of time.
  • Makes you focus on developing your business. You will have more time to plan and strategize sales (more profits) while your precious VA is continuing the day to day administrative operation.
  • Bonuses/rewards are flexible. Since you are not mandated by the government and VAs are independent contractors.

 CONS:

  • Language barrier. Since you hire someone from different region, there will always be cultural differences. Always us simple English.
  • Work monitoring is difficult. You can’t watch your assistant’s screen and monitor how they actually work.
  • Trust and Confidentiality. VAs will be exposed with you and your client’s information. Observe and know your VAs very well before exposing them to confidential information.
  • Connectivity can be an issue. Internet/Technical issues are beyond our control. It can cause big problem in case there are urgent tasks. Ask your VAs to have a backup connection or plan and always communicate in times like this.
  • Unable to meet face-to-face. Tech tools such as Skype or Facetime are available, but meetings and conversations are always better face-to-face….. also… you cannot treat your assistant for lunch.

So, maybe youare wondering why a company who helps business get into office space would be promoting remote workers. The reason is we want to see business thrive and if it means you take a few square feet less, so be it. Even if you use a virtual assistant or two, you will still need some office space for your local staff. That is where we come in. Our local reps are pros at helping make sure you get the right office space for your business. There is no cost to their services. The landlord pays them to represent you. We do a lot more than just find offices that could work for you. We make sure you get the right space at the best possible price. Give us a try.

Do You Have a Great Workplace for Employees?

How good is your workplace?Everyone wants a workplace that is wonderful but why is one workplace great while another is lacking? Is it the leased office space that makes a particular firm productive and profitable? Could it be the specific office furniture or location? None of these things alone make any workplace truly great.

A great workplace is not about the brand of computers, the prestige of the building’s address. Here are six attributes that can work together to allow business owners to create an organization that excites employees, resulting in the reputation of being a great workplace.

6 Attributes of a Great Workplace

  1. Replace Policies with Company Mission: Hiring, motivating and retaining top notch employees if not about policies; those are simply rules. Create a company mission and vision that the team believes in and supports. With passion for a mission based on the CEO’s vision, rather than a bunch of policy statements, cultivates a real team capable of leaping forward with ideas and innovations as well as loyalty and hard work.
  2. Nurture Collaboration: Never stifle team members’ desires to work together, carrying ideas from one area of the business into others. Create a workplace where each group or department is allowed to freely convey ideas to other organizational groups. The pay-off in productivity, amazing leaps forward and trained staff retention is incredible.
  3. Cultivate an Agile Workplace: Today’s office space is not the traditional cubicle or corner office. An office hoteling software application allows easy utilization of much smaller workspaces and allows each member of an organization to work in the style that is best for them. Technology allows the telecommuting or third place team members to only be physically in-office as needed. Work areas that provide desks or standing work counters allow team members to avoid the strain of sitting at a computer immobile for hours at a time. Staying in close contact does not have to mean being in the same conference room any longer. The office space of today is any area where business can conveniently and productively be conducted.
  4. Replace Ownership with Membership: Everyone employee is accountable to their customers and managers but in the past processes were “owned” by an employee, generating office stress and politics as power plays were often used to try to win the ownership role. Instead, remove the territorial nature of office spaces and encourage the concept of being privileged to be a member of a team or teams that create revenue and find ways for the company to save money. It becomes everyone’s process and fosters a sense of belonging and identity in the work environment.
  5. Create a Quality Experience for Employees: It is little surprise that employee retention is low in those workplaces that are dull and uninspiring. Create an office space that team members what to enter into and do work. Strive for a vibrant, magnetic space that draws people in during their in-office work time. This engages employees and they will look forward to the connected, exhilarated feeling obtained when they need to hotel an office space for an hour or a day.
  6. Stay on the Cutting Edge: Today’s fast paced, constantly changing economy allows those companies built on flexible office spaces with strong company values and loyalty to survive,  while others around them fail. As work methods, technological capabilities and mobile computing power speed along, use best practices to stay on the cutting edge. Remember that it’s the people who create value in a knowledge based company; an office is just a space that houses technology where people can come perform productive tasks. .

These are some of the attributes that will help turn your office space into a great workplace for your employees; making them both happier and more productive at the same time.

Furthermore, INC.com reviewed the best in office amenities and policies that were covered in Inc. and on Inc.com.

Here are 10 Tips for Making Employees Love Their Workplace:

  1.        Stay Organized
  2.        Make it Comfortable
  3.        Give Everyone a Say
  4.        Consider Openness
  5.        Make the Workplace a Community
  6.        Focus on Utility
  7.        Make the Office Optional
  8.        Make Education a Priority
  9.        Consider Mixing Uses in a Great Space
  10.        Add Some Perks

Some interesting opinions that we found in Workplace Experience Group on LinkedIn.

One of the keys to a productive workforce is happy employees and a positive workplace not only helps productivity, but also reduces the number of employees leaving.

“Organizations of all types, large and small, for-profit and not-for-profit, from across the U.S. and Canada, are implementing programs and policies that foster employee health and well-being while enhancing organizational performance.”

http://www.phwa.org/ – American Psychological Association – Psychologically Healthy Workplaces

“We have been listening to employees and evaluating employers since 1980 in order to understand what makes a workplace great. We know that the foundation of every great workplace is trust between employees and management. Our employee survey, culture assessment tools, research, and advisory services have made us leaders in helping organizations build high-trust workplaces. “

http://www.greatplacetowork.com/ – Great Place To Work Institute

If you need help finding a great workplace for your business, we’d be happy to help. Let us know what you are looking for and we will get right to work. There is no cost to you for our services. It is FREE.

Going Green: Key Features of an Eco-Friendly Office Space

Target a green eco-frienldy office spaceWhether currently searching for new office space or seeking climate-friendly renovations for your current property, “green”  eco-friendly office space provides innovative solutions for greater productivity and employee well-being.  Although many companies and representatives may give the impression of being “earth-friendly” not every building automatically fits the strict parameters for a “green” office. Unlike traditional offices, “green” offices take full responsibility for their waste and environmental effect. These office also actively seek to minimize their carbon “footprint.”  As you seek a healthier, eco-smart workplace, consider these key features in green offices.

LEED-Certification 

For an office to be truly “green,” it must carry strict certifications from organizations such as The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.  This independent organization carefully grades buildings based on their infrastructure, resource efficiency, pollution output, and overall employee health.  Investing in an LEED-certified building provides a safe, sustainable environment to maximize workplace efficiency.

“Living” Infrastructure

Green offices are built with far more than simple wood and metal.  Sustainable offices recognize the value or bringing the “outdoors” inside with innovative features such as “living walls” and indoor gardens. Office plants and greenery provide natural air filtration, boosting employee health and well-being while also creating a more restful, natural atmosphere.

Rejuvenating Work Space

Green offices often stray from the traditional office “cubby”design.  Employees in green offices enjoy open office space with minimal segregation and walls.  These open offices allow greater use of natural light and air filtration without necessary walls and cramped work spaces.  Green offices such as  The American Society of Interior Designers employ “human-centric” floor plans that improve natural employee collaboration, creativity, and workplace moral.

Ecodistrict

Although green office space can be created nearly anywhere, these healthier, earth-friendly havens are often found in “ecodistricts,” designated areas that actively push sustainable energy and “green” principles.  Many cities, particularly in Washington, Colorado, and California are passionately supporting the creation of more ecodistricts with greater emphasis on clean public transportation and electric energy use. If looking for new office space, start your search in a clean, ecodistrict first.

Although creating a completely “green” office may appear challenging, creating a climate-friendly work space begins with small but meaningful changes anyone can make. Going green begins with managing your office’s power, water, and carbon output.

For information on finding a new, eco-friendly office space opportunity, please contact us today.

How to Help Your Team Comfortably Transition to Standing Desks (Part 2)

Standing DeskWelcome back to the second half of this two-part series on introducing standing desks into your office to improve both productivity and employee health. Last time, we covered why standing desks are the ideal solution to the myriad of health problems that tend to plague office employees and how to slowly introduce standing desks as your team adapts to the new physical norm. However, the standing desk policy doesn’t require participants to stand all the time so today we’ll start with interesting chair alternatives for sitting, resting, and working out.

Consider Chair Alternatives

Every now and then, something we thought was permanent about the world will be changed suddenly by a new idea. In this case, standing desks have introduced the idea that offices don’t need office chairs. In fact, employees can sit on whatever makes them comfortable and productive. No one should stand 100% of the work day so transitions will happen and you can make them easier by helping your staff choose how they want to sit when they sit. Some standing desk users prefer a tall stool to rest on from time to time, others like a nice big exercise ball for their sitting time which is also great for desk workouts. Others will keep a desk chair or folding camp chair nearby for lumbar support when they rest.

Find a Posture Coach

One of the reasons some people have a terrible time adapting to standing desks is because they don’t know how to stand. Many people slouch, lock their knees, or simply never learned to line their spine and shoulders above the hips and stand in ‘parade rest’ for long periods of time. If you want standing desks to be a hit, make sure your team knows how to stand comfortably. A posture coach can be a training video, a demonstration, an employee assigned to help others, or a professional brought in from the outside.

Dynamic and Anti-Fatigue Standing

Finally, even with good posture no one stands in the same position for hours comfortably. Standing desk professionals have begun to explore interesting alternatives like a wobble board, foam tubes, step stools, and mini-elliptical machines for enjoyable standing that doesn’t leave you stiff. Of course, no matter how you mix it up, fatigue mats are an undeniable necessity as they turn the hard, unyielding floor into a conforming, supportive surface for your feet.

Whether your team is three people or fifty, introducing standing desks is a great way to promote employee health and break up the monotony of everyone sitting quietly without activity or movement for many hours at a stretch. Just make sure when updating the office to standing desks that you do so in a way that is workable and comfortable for everyone.

Your Business Profits: Investing In Markets Vs. Back Into Your Business

Medical office space costsBusiness is never in black and white. There are endless different ways to make your annual profits; however a very contemporary debate within the world of business concerns whether it’s more profitable to invest in emerging and current stock markets, or whether you should consider investing some of what you earn back into your business. With a front to back investment management platform available on the market, you’re able to properly analyse your profit efforts, but which technique should you opt for?

Investing Business Profits In Markets

More Chances To Grow Your Money

While stock markets are renowned for their volatility, there’s no denying the growth potential when investing in upcoming markets. Usually, the stock market tends to rise in value over time, so you’re almost guaranteed an increase in profit if you invest wisely. Having said that, the prices of singular stocks are even more volatile, and can appreciate one day and depreciate the next, so investing in markets can be quite a high risk for all businesses. It is possible to stay safe when investing in markets, as some are undeniably more stable than others, so there is a high potential to build your wealth when making this decision.

Dividend Income

Furthermore, there are some stocks on the market that provide income in the form of a dividend, although it’s worth noting that this doesn’t apply for all markets. Essentially, this means that the payments will arrive and make you a profit even if the stock has decreased in value. Particularly for individuals looking to fund a retirement or budget for further investments in the future, dividend income can be highly useful.

Investing Back Into Your Business

Guarantees Business Growth

As we’ve already explored, you can grow your profits via market investments regarding that you make the correct choice, however reinvesting in your business provides you with opportunities to grow your company as a whole. Failure to reinvest money into your business will limit the amount of growth that you’re able to experience. Naturally, one of your main business goals will be to slowly increase the amount of money that you’re earning each year; however, you’ll find this figure staying stationary if you fail to invest back into your business. Due to the ample opportunities that come with reinvesting into your business, it’s something that you’ll want to enforce from day one.

Opens Room For Further Support

Particularly for small start-up businesses, it can be a challenge to accomplish every single one of your business goals on your own or with a limited team. In order to improve the professionalism and efficiency of your business, you’ll want to hire a range of different job roles, with freelancers and contractors just being the beginning until you’re able to hire more full-time staff. Initially, this can be a scary investment to make for your business as you’re losing a considerable amount of revenue, but regarding that you’re wise with your investments, it should inevitably lead you to success.

To summarise, we’d recommend investing back into your business before you take the leap into investing in stock markets. While this can provide you with much larger profits, the volatility of stock markets pose as a larger risk than benefit, whereas reinvesting in your business is a stable way to ensure that you slowly increase your ROI value over time.

As you grow and reinvest in your business, we can help with your office space needs. Contact us today if you are in need of office space.

How to Help Your Team Comfortably Transition to Standing Desks (Part 1)

Transition to Standing Desks

Transition to Standing Desks

Good employers have always done their best to promote health and well-being in their workers and not just because a healthy worker is energetic, has a better attitude, and needs to take less time off. Many companies are genuinely dedicated to being part of ‘the solution’ rather than ‘the problem’ and in light of recent studies, there’s no denying that sitting all day at work has become a major health problem. Companies have tried in-office gyms or gym membership vouchers, inviting landscaping with jogging paths, catering healthy lunches, and hosting employee sporting events. However, with heart disease, cancer, and waistlines still on the rise, it’s no wonder businesses are trying something new.

Standing Desks: Solution to Employee Health?

Standing desks address the age-old problem of leading a horse to water. You can make company gyms available and implement reward programs for using them, but you can’t actually force a steadily less healthy workforce to actually use the workout machines. Implementing standing desks, on the other hand, gets everyone up, on their feet, and their blood moving at a quick, healthy rate all within the usual work hours. In many ways, implementing a standing desk policy in your office can help to reverse some of the damage caused to your employees by years of sitting still and working for hours. While you may meet some resistance from your team about the change, the key to a successful standing desk transition is to do it gradually with the right posture, timing, and equipment.

Introduce Standing Desks Over Time

It’s important to understand when switching to a standing desk office that standing for long periods of time requires a number of posture and stability muscles that most people haven’t worked on, especially if eight hours of their day or more are spent sitting and working. This means that a full 100% transition is likely to see a lot of hurting feet, legs, and lower backs, not to mention the drop in productivity as fatigue sets in. Instead, it’s best to introduce standing slowly over time, adding an hour or two of standing per day each week with the help of soft fatigue mats for adapting feet.

This means that you don’t want single-height standing desks. While you can work with two desks at separate heights, the best solution is an easily height-adjustable standing desk that can transition depending on whether your employees need to be standing or sitting. This also allows you to make personalized adjustments to achieve the optimal standing desk height for each employee’s personal size.

Standing desks are one of the best things that has ever happened to office and employee health but introducing them to the team is only the beginning. Join us next time for the second half of this two-part series where we’ll talk about chair alternatives, posture, and new ways to think about standing.

If you are looking for office space, contact us today!

Top Tips For Making Your Office Friendly For Those With Reduced Mobility

Mobility ScooterIf you’re starting up a business, moving or looking to make renovations to an existing office, then taking into account employees and visitors with reduced mobility is imperative. Creating a diverse and encompassing workplace will not only help to tackle any problems with inaccessible access in the future, but it may also help to widen your hiring opportunities. Creating an accessible office isn’t as costly as it may initially seem, and here, we’re providing you with top tips to help make your office friendly for those with reduced mobility.

Corridors & Pathways

One of the key areas in the office that can create a barrier for those with reduced mobility is the corridors. If these are cluttered with cupboards or boxes, then the corridors may seem narrower than they actually are. As a result, those who rely on the use of a mobility scooter or a wheelchair, no matter the size, may be unable to navigate their way through seamlessly. Simply decluttering your hallways, corridors and outdoor pathways can help to ensure that your office is much friendlier for those with reduced mobility. In some cases, you may consider renovating your office corridors in order to widen them, or create alternative wheelchair-accessible routes to accommodate those with reduced mobility.

Ramps & Front-Door Accessibility

A big consideration for businesses is the accessibility of their front door. Ramps, mobility scooter routes and automatic doors may all need to be installed, or renovated, in order to accommodate those with reduced mobility appropriately. Ramps are often an affordable option, but these tend to be temporary, unless concrete alternatives are put in place to act as a ramp. In addition to this, you may want to consider separate routes to the building for mobility scooters in particular, as these may be deemed to be a hazard to pedestrians. Numerous hospitals and other public buildings tend to class bikes and mobility scooters as a similar vehicle and therefore, have a bike/mobility scooter route to help ensure the safety and ease of navigation of everybody entering and exiting the building. Automatic doors may also be a consideration that your business may implement, due to the ease of access they provide when entering and exiting a building.

Allow Work Day Modifications

This is particularly important for businesses who have hired employees who have a disability. In order to make the workplace friendlier, some businesses may require the work day to be modified, in order to allow for frequent breaks, flexible starting times and in some cases, the opportunity to work from home from time to time. While this isn’t always a necessity, and sometimes it may not even be a practical possibility, if there are some ways in which your business is able to better accommodate the needs of their disabled employees (whether they are have reduced mobility, or a visual or hearing impairment), then they should be a key consideration.

Understanding the needs of visitors with reduced mobility, and accurately accommodating for those needs can often be key for business success. Whether you’re looking to widen your corridors, install ramps at the building entrance or reinstate a neglected lift, there are plenty of options that you can consider when it comes to making your office friendly for those with reduced mobility.

If you need help finding office space that is friendly for your reduced Mobility employees, contact us.

Coworking Perks People Love: Workplace Strategies to Improve Productivity

coworkingOne of the best things about having office space in a coworking environment is that it offers employees a chance to socialize and meet people beyond their own workplace. Happier employees are excited to come to work. Here are a few tips to keep your employees happy and help increase their productivity in at work.

Encourage Participation in Workplace Learning Activities.

Coworking spaces offer tenants opportunities like lunch and learns and happy hour discussions. These are “free” sessions for your employees to attend and broaden their knowledge of a particular subject. In some cases, these opportunities could help them do their own work and make them a more productive member of the team.

Participate in Workplace Social Activities.

If your coworking space does not already offer its tenants a chance to join a team like kickball or have regular ping pong tournaments, see if you can work with the managers to organize one. Exercise is a great mood lifter and helps the brain with memory and learning.

Suggest Working in Common Areas.

As human beings, we crave social interaction. Coworking spaces offer employees the chance to meet new people in the common areas or engage in discussions that aren’t related to work. Offering your employees a moment to step outside their everyday work routine provides time to recharge their batteries.

All of these strategies are inherent perks when you lease in a coworking environment. Look for these types of amenities when you look for new office space and your employees will appreciate it. Contact us for more information on how we can help find the right workplace for you and your company.

How A Coworking Office Can Be A Major Boost To Your Company

coworking office spaceIs your business struggling to keep up with its competitors or are you looking for a way to stand out in a crowded field? Then consider a coworking office space. This surprising concept has spread wildly across the business world and it may inspire your company to greater heights.

What is A Coworking Office?

These intriguing new work ideas are based on the idea of sharing working areas with other people and businesses. You can rent these places out and will work beside and along with other people. It is a fairly novel concept and one that many people are arguing for and against. We believe it will seriously improve your business by offering you a variety of benefits.

The Benefits of Coworking Office For Your Business

When you invest in a coworking office, you receive many great benefits, including:

  • Improved interaction between your coworkers
  • New interactions with potential partners and business associates
  • Boosted performance caused by focusing on boosted capacities
  • Stronger trust between your coworkers and other companies
  • Better grasp of how your coworkers work and obtain their goals

These many benefits are a big part of why coworking spaces are such a wise investment. However, there are a few negatives that should be discussed. The most problematic of these is knowledge leakage.

The Risk Of Knowledge Leakage

While coworking spaces allow you to meet new people and new potential partners, they also cause the possibility of knowledge leakage. Think of this problem of a potential loss as a business advantage. For example, let’s say your company has information that could help it outperform its competitors.

Unfortunately, this information is found by somebody sharing office space with you, and they use it instead. While these instances are very rare in most coworking spaces, it is important to acknowledge the fact that they could happen.

If you are interested in learning more about finding a coworking office, please don’t hesitate to contact us today.