FIVE MODES OF WORK, EACH REQUIRING DIFFERENT ENVIRONMENTS
Focusing | Every worker needs some time that’s uninterrupted to concentrate and attend to specific tasks such as thinking, studying, contemplating, strategizing, processing, and other “head down” work best performed in one’s own mental “zone”. Increasingly designers are building in “Quiet Spaces” or zones within the open plan environment in an effort to provide opportunity for focus and respite.
Collaborating | Fundamentally, collaboration is about working with one or more people to achieve a goal, such as collectively creating content, brainstorming, etc. Ideally, all perspectives are equally respected, brought together to leverage the group’s shared mind. Informal collaborative spaces such as media:scape lounges provide solutions for employees to gather and share ideas.
Learning | Learning is about building knowledge. Whether in a classroom or a conversation with peers, learning happens best by doing and building on what’s already known. When thinking is made visible to others, learning is accelerated and becomes an integrated part of organizational culture. Providing furniture throughout a space that is flexible, interactive and multi-functional, such as the Node chair, can help create impromptu environments that foster learning.
Socializing | For knowledge to be fully internalized and useful, it needs to be socialized. When people socialize and work with others in formal and informal ways, both learning and trust are built. Combining trust with an organization’s intellectual capital creates the necessary ingredients for innovation. Collaborative furniture in shared spaces, such as the Bix Lounge, gives people informal opportunities to share knowledge and socialize.
Rejuvenating | Today’s workers need precious time for their brains to decompress. Whether that means socializing in the work café, meditating for 15 minutes in a private enclave, or taking a refreshing walk around the block, it is important to find ways to refresh the mind.