A startup’s workplace needs to be focused on lifestyle and make workers feel at home rather than just provide the basics, Spaces design manager Maarten Jamin says.
Jamin is behind the newly launched Spaces co-working hub in Sydney and says a workplace sets the tone for a company’s success or failure and needs to provide more than just “furniture, desks and internet”.
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“Now younger people try to live their work – it’s not a nine-to-five job anymore,” Jamin tells StartupSmart.
“Mixing your normal life with your work life is the trend. You don’t just take your work home with you but you take your home to your workplace too.
“You need to feel at home and at rest when you’re at work.”
Jamin, an interior architect, says too many startup workplaces at the moment still have a corporate feel.
“If you look at established places now they tend to be too much on the corporate side and too little human space,” he says.
“You have to look at how to make it more human and more personal so you can get the individuality out from the personal and into the room.”
How to make your workplace more personal
Adapting your workplace to make it more personal and lifestyle-based is all about the little things, Jamin says.
“The human factor is often forgotten,” he says.
“We’re [at Spaces] trying to bring in elements that cater for that, like better cafes, nicer seats and places to retreat and be private.
“It even comes down to what music is played in the background. It all adds to the feel of quality, of belonging and trust.”
For the new space in Sydney, Jamin devoted an entire week to setting up the accessories and books to be put on display, and he says that it’s important that startups take the time to ensure all aspects of their workplace or office fit into this lifestyle concept.
But Jamin’s biggest piece of advice for startups is very simple: “hire a good architect”.
A unique coworking space
Spaces now has two locations in Australia, with the Sydney building joining a site in Melbourne.
Jamin says the concept for the co-working space is all about lifestyle.
“It’s quite unique,” he says.
“We’re trying to build an environment not only with furniture, decent working desks and internet, but also with a whole environment of people, coffee and events.
“We go the extra length to make sure the people who are here feel at home, feel comfortable and are well taken care of.
“We want to bring the best out of them and for to help them bring the best out of themselves.”
This focus on the atmosphere and lifestyle is what sets Spaces apart from the other co-working spaces around the country, he says.
“Our offering is different than other competitors – we offer a uniquely high-quality space and services you won’t find in our competitors,” Jamin says.
“We want to be a hub where you can find like-minded people. It’s a communal place and something you don’t see anywhere in Australia.”