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Philip Ross and panel discuss the future of workspace

Founder and CEO Cordless Group and Ungroup, Philip Ross, debated the future of workspace at a special roundtable sponsored by International Quarter London

Philip discussed the future of workspace at an expert roundtable in London.

Why should organisations invest in creating physical workspaces where their employees want to work? It should be simple common sense. Employee well-being is strongly correlated to productivity and performance and one of the largest contributing factors to well-being is the physical workspace. But what kinds of workplaces should we be creating in the new ‘gig economy’ of remote and co-working? And how do we construct spaces that foster community, collaboration and innovation, yet respect neurodiversity?

In association with International Quarter London, the joint venture project between Lendlease and LCR, Management Today assembled an expert panel to discuss how best to approach the challenges and opportunities.

Philip joined panel experts from Management Today, Lendlease, Ogilvy & Mather UK, King’s College London, Fnatic, University College London and KKS Strategy. 

The panellists considered the role of the workplace in delivering on business strategy, including the need for speed, adaptability and flexibility and how to ‘bring a place to life’.

Philip said: “To meet new priorities, employers need elasticity, but unfortunately buildings aren't elastic. Signing a lease to move into four walls is highly restrictive, especially for tech companies that grow at remarkable rates. I forecast the future of work and my particular interest is looking at high performing workplaces but most offices remain dumb containers that are mostly empty. There's a fundamental mismatch. If you look at the history of the office, it became a container for all the files, cabinets, and now servers that an organisation needed. But all that is vanishing as everything moves to the cloud.”

On the topic of paying attention to personality and team dynamics, Philip asks: “So if we’ve got all these different personality types, why are our offices homogeneous? I still walk into buildings all over the world and find 5,000 identical desks.”

Philip adds: “Too often conversations and responsibilities about workplace strategy are held too far down in an organisation, in facilities management or real estate. But Winston Churchill once said, ‘We shape our buildings and thereafter they shape us.’ If chief executives want to reshape their organisation, change its culture, improve teamwork, and increase speed to market, the easiest way to do that is with physical change. And there can be some significant cost savings. I’ve been talking to a bank that currently spends £80m a year on rent, but we know that they could save at least 30% by moving to agile working. That’s big.”

To read the full discussion, go to:

If you’d like to talk about tech strategy for your workplace, say

Date: Fri, 24 Nov 2017 10:18:45 +0000 GMT

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