Exploring Choice in the Workplace

A preview of our series of Work Design TALKs planned for 2016. Tickets and details for our next event on Thursday, July 28 in Chicago are available here!

London Communication Agency’s new office, designed by Fletcher Priest. Photo by Chris Gascoigne.
London Communication Agency’s new office, designed by Fletcher Priest. Photo by Chris Gascoigne.

Technology has enabled mobility in the workplace, and mobility means that employees have more choices when it comes to deciding when, where, and how to work. Maybe this means that you now have expanded options for working from home, or perhaps it means that your employer has adopted activity-based working strategies wherein you no longer have a dedicated desk, but many choices in its place about where to carry out your daily tasks. In any case, many of us are no longer tethered to a particular location or office. WDM contributor Leigh Stringer delves into this in her recent article, “The Power of Choice in the Workplace“. And indeed, a recent IFMA report confirms that choices about where, when, and how we work really matter, and that companies are implementing strategies that support choice at a fast clip. And it results in positive outcomes: there’s also evidence that more choice can reduce employee stress.

So it sounds like it’s a good thing for most of us. But how to you begin to adopt and then manage strategies that offer more choice? That’s what we’re seeking to find out during our 2016 series of Work Design TALKs.

In 10 cities across the country, we’ll probe leading workplace experts about how more choice, deployed thoughtfully, can enable organizations to better support their current business practices and employees, as well as help to attract and retain new ones. We’ll get answers about helping your workforce (or yourself!) to grow accustomed to more choice and identify the best settings for particular tasks, and why choice can increase employee well-being and satisfaction. We’ll find out which policies work when it comes to managing where, how, and when employees will work, whether it’s in different work settings on site, and/or remote work environments. And finally, we’ll look specifically at what the coworking model can teach us about the benefits of choosing work environments that suit particular needs.

Later in the year, we’ll return to two of our most popular cities, D.C. and Chicago, for a follow-up TALK that digs deeper into how choice affects design decisions. We’ll probe a panel of firm principals and experts about how designing for choice can enable organizations to better support their current business practices and employees, as well as help to attract and retain new ones. During these two events, we’ll discuss how design can influence the level of choice in a workplace, which furniture solutions allow for more choice by flexing to an employee’s needs. We’ll also look at why designing for choice will increase clients’ well-being and satisfaction at work, and finally, how you can advise clients, whether through change management strategy or other tools, about adjusting and best utilizing a new space that supports a variety of places and ways to get work done.

TALKs have been confirmed on the following dates:

Thursday, Jan. 28 in D.C.
Thursday, Feb. 25 in Seattle
Thursday, April 21 in Chicago
Tuesday, May 24 in Houston
Wednesday, June 22 in D.C.
Thursday, July 28 in Chicago
Wednesday, August 17 in San FranciscoTuesday, September 20 in D.C.
Thursday, October 27 in Philadelphia

Interested in joining us elsewhere? Tell us which cities you prefer and share your contact info so we can email you with event details, panelist bios, and special ticket offers!

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As always, a special thank you to our sponsors for making this new series of TALKs possible!

Series Sponsor:

Host Sponsor:
Social Tables
Coterie Worklounge
Rocket Fuel

Discover Financial Services

Support by:
ACS Flooring
ADI Construction

American Office
Business Interiors by Staples
CertainTeed Ceilings
Citizen Creative
CoreNet Washington
FOX Architects
GHT Ltd.
Herman Miller
Kimball Office
OFS Brands
Partners by Design
Place Value
rand* construction
San Felipe Place
Shaw Contract Group
Skender Construction
Tandus Centiva
Turner Construction

Association Partners:
CoreNet Washington State Chapter
Workplace Evolutionaries
The International Interior Design Association

When it comes to visibility with the right audience, sponsorship is an easy “choice”. Contact Michelle Weiss at michelle[email protected] for details.

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