It may come as a surprise, but there’s a significant number of similarities between a hotel and an office space: the expectations of the quality, the underlying requirements, and the desires held by the occupants. The hospitality feel itself is surely working its way right into the interior design of modern-day offices.
Humans have an innate desire to feel recognized, welcome, and comfortable. In hotels, you’ll likely be greeted, good customer service personnel will truly hear you and remember you, but the space itself will perform all 3.
Spaces, and the way the areas are designed, are powerful. They can tell a story, give a first impression, and confirm preconceived thoughts about companies. Of course, styles change with time, but having a space that represents your business and business’s goals should always be a priority.
Defining the Spaces
Whether you’d like to believe it or not, customers and employees all have their opinions on if they want to buy your product, work for you, etc. all based on your facility (even if these are subconscious thoughts). How are the colors? Equipment? Natural lighting? Meeting spaces? And the list goes on.
Similar to a hotel, an office building also needs private space, social areas, and *bonus* add-on features. Does your office offer ample space for focus work, 1:1 conversation, idea sharing, brainstorming, and relaxing? Does it feature any add-ons like free coffee or fountain drinks, wellness programs, gyms, or other recreational spaces? The lines are blurring between the traditional office design and spaces offering hospitality.
You may have heard the term “resimercial design”. This term was coined as one of the newest office trends, bringing residential furniture and designs into the workplace – continuing to reinforce the implementation of hospitality. Many collaboration spaces within offices now feature couches and other unique, eye-catching furniture to pair with whiteboards and modern technology. It’s like a unique living room – or a boutique hotel.
Work from Anywhere
The trend of work from home is no secret, and work from anywhere is growing quickly. But, what if your employees could “work from anywhere” right in your building? Creating a facility that is worth a commute is just what people are looking for. It’s about truly investing in your people and your business to tell a story though your space. This may just sound like a millennial’s dream, but it also fulfills those exact human desires referred to earlier: to feel recognized, welcome, and comfortable.
Once you have the indoor of your building meeting expectations, it’s time to focus on the outside. This is not only the first impression to new guests, but there are actually other ways to utilize the outdoors as extra workspace.
Getting outside has many positive impacts on mental health, such as lowering stress and anxiety, improving sleep, and bettering work performance. Implementing outdoor furniture and screens or other equipment to reduce glare or direct sunlight is the first step. The second important step is ensuring that Wi-Fi reaches and there is access to outlets for charging. This change in scenery to the outdoors and the addition of fresh air and greenery may be incredibly influential to employee attitude, wellbeing, and productivity. Outdoor office space could easily set your business apart from others in an attempt to hire and retain the best talent.
The Customer Service of Hospitality
Customer service is the key aspect of hospitality, which also works right into the office in the form of company culture. How employees are treated and the way they are approached is crucial to the full circle aspect of investing in your space.
This also includes respecting employees enough to implement many health and safety standards, especially with the prevalence of COVID-19. Ensure the quality of spaces by providing hand sanitizer, regularly scheduled cleaning, and distance between employees.
Walking away, we can see that the office is no longer just a building, but a space for gathering, growing, and creating. How we design that space and the features we offer are crucial to gaining the right state-of-mind from both employees and customers. It’s all in the hospitality.