Agile work environments
The most productive employees are the happiest ones. Long gone are the days when we expect our staff to fit into a cubicle and work like robots, and we’re disrupting the accepted status quo for decades by creating office spaces that favor creativity, flexibility, and collaboration.
Agile has been a buzzword in business recently, with Forbes hailing it as one of the top ways to future-proof enterprises and interest in this office space model increasing by 500% since the pandemic. It is a stark departure from the way most are used to working but, while it may take some adjustment, there can be many advantages to this style of work.
We explore what agile work environments mean in an office space setting and how it can be used to create a positive impact.
What is an agile work environment?
An agile work environment in company office spaces essentially means providing the flexibility and opportunity to work in the most beneficial way to employees and a chance to connect and collaborate with others. It encourages conversation and discussion, productivity, and creativity in a way that traditional workplaces don’t by optimizing the space available for meaningful work processes that are unique to your employees’ needs. It is more concerned with overall results rather than how they are achieved, giving employees freedom and empowerment to work in a way that best suits them, for example, hybrid working, flexible work times, breakout spaces, and focus areas.
What are the benefits of agile work environments?
The adoption of agile work environments in your office space comes with a myriad of perks that support both employees and employers:
- Inspire conversations - with different team members in the office space at different times and different areas to congregate, employees that otherwise wouldn’t usually interact are given the opportunity to converse and connect.
- Provide employees with freedom and choice - everyone works efficiently at different times and in different ways, so by allowing your team to decide what’s best for them you’ll find their productivity increases.
- Utilize smaller spaces in a more efficient way - rising costs of office spaces are becoming more of a concern, but by incorporating an agile work environment you can optimize a smaller space in a more efficient, productive manner.
- Improve employee wellness - reduces burnout and stress by giving your employees flexibility and independence. You’ll retain your staff and attract talent with your forward-thinking policies too!
- Increase productivity and output - you’ll get the best out of your employees by providing them with office space that fits their needs so they can work at their optimum.
How can you overcome the challenges of agile work environments?
With all new changes in office spaces, there can be some difficulties when bringing a new style of working to an already established workflow. By taking the following steps, there will be no surprises and the introduction of agile workspaces will be smooth and seamless:
- Communicate early - Firstly, involve all team members and take on board their feedback before making any drastic decisions. They may have ideas that you haven’t considered and you can ensure that all concerns are addressed.
- Explain the process - Change can be unsettling, so taking the time to explain how and why you’re modifying your office space to set up an agile work environment will help relieve any worries.
- Take your time - A step-by-step approach not only gives you an opportunity to check that each stage aligns with your goals, but also gives you time to make changes if it’s not working and ensures your team has time to adjust to an agile work environment.
How to utilize agile work environments in your office spaces
The agile environment you create will entirely depend on the needs of your team, but there are some ideas you can start with before adapting them for your employees. Hybrid working has become an accepted way of working and you could incorporate hot desking into your office space rather than having set workspaces for everyone. Then when you’ve made some additional space in the office, you could allocate an area for collaboration and others where employees can make calls or focus.
The right technology will also support an agile work environment. Communication tools such as Slack and Microsoft Teams, and project management software like Asana will create a completely flexible way of working. No matter where your team is - at home, in the office, or somewhere remote in the world - they’ll be able to connect and collaborate for a truly agile way of working.
How can The Square help you create an agile work environment for your employees?
At The Square, we have a number of options from coworking spaces to private offices and enterprise suites that work perfectly for small to large enterprises. Not only that, but we have common areas that are great for your team to collaborate in a more relaxed space, and focus rooms if a team member needs somewhere without distraction. We’re also accessible 24/7 for night owls and early risers.
Come and check us out in Houston, Mexico City, Salt Lake City, and Washington DC to see how we can help your employee’s needs!