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GenslerOnWork examines the modern workplace and how design can help us become more engaged and productive as we earn our livings.

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Entries in Workplace Design (74)


Branding and the Open Plan Workplace 

A wall graphic at Hachette's new New York office. Image © Gensler

Hachette Book Group recently moved its New York office into an open-plan workspace, breaking with the publishing industry’s longstanding tradition of keeping a publisher’s individual imprints sequestered by physical boundaries like private offices and designated meeting spaces. Not surprisingly, the transition was met with trepidation. Employees expressed concern that Hachette’s divisions—from Little, Brown and Company to Grand Central Publishing—would not be able to maintain their autonomy within an open-plan workspace. Closed-office plans provide departments with spaces to call their own; open-office plans do not. With all employees stuck in a single unified space, would it be possible for Hachette’s unique imprints and brands to retain their individuality?

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Rooftop Retreat for a D.C. Not-for-Profit

The rooftop conference center at the American Psychological Association's D.C. office. Image © Gensler

“Oh, wow!” I’ve overheard this more than once. It's the reaction when the elevator doors open onto the American Psychological Association’s (APA) new rooftop conference center. The view – looking across a verdant terrace to take in the U.S. Capitol dome rising over the trees – makes an impression.

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Telling Your Story

Image © Gensler

For law firms of all sizes and scope, personality is an essential component of a firm’s DNA. Every firm is unique, and a firm’s individual character, alongside its reputation, is often what differentiates it from competitors and attracts clients and future recruits.

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Chance Encounters: The Winning Ticket to the Innovation Lottery? 

“Know your odds before placing an innovation bet. Image © Macaulay Campbell

Every organization seeks innovation in order to differentiate its products and services. But how do you engender more innovation?

One secret to more innovation, at least according to popular press articles and a number of blog musings, is "chance encounters." Chance encounters are those occasions when people who have no scripted reason to be with one another--they may not even know one another--nevertheless find themselves together and end up serendipitously co-creating the Next Big Thing.

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Identity Crisis

When banks adopt environments more akin to technology companies, is this a culture shift? Image © Chad Ziemendorf

We’re seeing an interesting trend among our banking and financial services clients: many think of themselves as tech companies and are increasingly requesting creative and innovate office space reflecting this sense of identity. They are swapping more traditional offices for open-plan workspaces that are more commonly associated with Silicon Valley in order to foster more interaction and collaboration among staff members. Although some banks do have aspects of their businesses that are actually “tech” companies, the desire of banks to do just this raises interesting questions about workspaces and the need to align a company’s workspace and culture.

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