Monday, February 11, 2013

Monday Visual Inspiration: A new way to work

I recently stopped by The Desk in Capitol Hill in Denver for a pot of French press coffee, a croissant, and a bit of writing time.  It's an interesting concept in remote worindependent contractor or entrepreneurial office locations.  The Desk has a coffee shop that also sells sandwiches and snacks (and wine and beer in the evenings!) where you can sit and work for free (other than the cost of comestibles, that is). More ingeniously, it has a bunch of spaces in the back that are quieter and range from smallish open offices to boardrooms to acoustically-isolated booths perfect for recording or conducting a webinar or Skype session with a client.

More companies are going to open cubicles instead of private offices.  This is a trend overall in business, and I've definitely seen it in hospitals and healthcare settings.  The plus side of the open office is that it's easier to jump up and find someone if you have a question, and it saves space.  (Walls and ADA clearances at doors and halls take up a lot of real estate.) However, some studies are showing these days that people are slightly more anxious in open office plans because there's such a lack of privacy--one is always on display, so if a worker comes back from a stressful meeting with a client or boss or just needs a moment to breathe (or frequently in my case, if said worker needs to fart), they cannot do that at their desk.  It's necessary to go to the bathroom or in a conference room or even completely outside.

The Desk takes the open office concept even further as a workspace. Instead of having to rent an office somewhere, an independent contractor or entrepreneur can rent space in The Desk's facilities for in-person or virtual/web meetings or even as workspace for themselves and their collaborators. Space rental includes access to internet and printing/scanning/faxing services, plus drip coffee by Colorado's own ink! Coffee. I certainly found the open cafe area to be comfortable and amenable to concentrating, despite the activity around me (some friends catching up, a few people working, and a gaggle of yoginis looking for a post-asana chai for the road). 

1 comment:

Miss Kitty said...

That looks like all kinds of WIN. I was just saying the other day how great it would be if there were a place near Small Town where teachers (K-college) could take their work and not be disturbed, someplace they could plop down with their tote bags of papers or their laptops, have a latte, and then workworkwork and get up to pee/have a smoke break without worrying that their stuff might disappear. Sounds like we need the Teacher's Desk here in Small Town.

What a great resource for small business people. Worth every penny, I imagine—much easier and more cost-effective than maintaining your own office facility. Hmmm!