Recently I have been speaking with the CEO’s of some local Dallas companies about their requirements for office space. Some of them were renewing their leases or expanding their offices. One individual said that he wanted to relocate his business to a new location.
As a tenant representative it is my job to understand precisely what my client is looking to obtain with their new space so I asked her what would be the ideal new location for your business. She proceeded to tell me that the current location was a little dated. She thought their office space was having a substantial impact on the firm’s ability to recruit quality employment candidates.
Another major concern was that the building’s infrastructure wasn’t updated. The elevator system was slow and the comfort of the air conditioning in the summer was substandard compared to other offices she had visited. While her actual office space was professional getting to it wasn’t up to modern standards.
The design of their present location had tilt wall concrete with limited openings for windows. She wanted a space that had a substantial amount of natural light and high ceilings as well. She thought that this environment would add to the collaborative efforts of the staff and increase the overall productivity of the company.
The design of the space had to walk a fine line. She wanted the space to have a positive impact upon visitors and employees. However, she didn’t want it to appear to be opulent. Her concern was to avoid the impression that the company was being foolish with the investors money but to provide a quality environment that make as positive overall impression.
Her present location contained multiple private offices. She wanted to change this part of her corporate culture. She wanted to remove 30 of then offices and retain private offices for the CFO, CIO, CMO and COO. All other employees were going to be in an open work environment. The executive’s offices were not to be to large since they were not in the office space as much as then other members of the team. She wanted open areas for the staff and not wasted on an empty office when she was traveling across then country.
She also expressed the need for flexibility in her lease. She understood the landlord’s need for an income stream and how it effects the value on their investment. She did require that the landlord would accommodate her need for expansion and commitments that the landlord would either provide that expansion capability.
What My Client Was Looking For In Her New Office Space:
- The office must be an asset that increases the firms ability to attract and retain employees
- The workspace must increase collaboration and operational efficiency
- The appearance must have a quality impression but not be too extravagant Flexibility with the lease regarding expansion rights
- The space needs to be physical proof that the company is concerned about the employees and their quality of like while at the office
- The location must provide a positive image of the company to investors, employees, investors.
- Less sheet rock and more open. Let the sun shine!
- Design the office space around the people that are their all day using the space not the people that are in the office a few hours each day.
I am seeing this trend in office design with new tenant representation opportunities. Many of my clients are concerned about hiring and retaining quality talent and the see their office space as a tool to accomplish this goal. They also want space that enhances teamwork and gives their employees the ability to collaborate with each other. The days of hiding in a private office appear to be gone.
As for the CEO’s that were expanding or renewing their leases. The office buildings they occupied already had many of the characteristics that were expressed as desires by the CEO that was relocating.