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Trending: Getting Back to the Traditional Office

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 1:26pm | by jennaleesmith1

For a lot of people, the notion of working from home can seem extremely enticing. Anyone who has ever been unfortunate enough to work in a dry, stuffy office environment knows how taxing it can be, especially during the winter months. 

There's somewhat of a sea-change happening at the moment, however,  Business owners are starting to realize how much mileage they can get by keeping all of their employees under the same roof. Productivity, supervision and scheduling issues are not uncommon among virtual employees, after all. 

Given the fact that working from home is easier than ever before, start-up business owners need to provide as much incentive as possible in order to attract employees to come into the office instead of working virtually. 

Here are two not-so-unknown tech companies that are paving the way for businesses thirsting to create a more attractive office space.


Like many businesses today, Facebook does indeed allow employees to work from home. What the company also offers, however, is an excellent work environment that young employees would be foolish to pass on going to each day. Just like the service Facebook offers to users, work at the company is very social in nature; traditional desks are eschewed and replaced by a more open work environment that allows employees to communicate and collaborate easily with one another. 

The hyper-modern building in Palo Alto, CA can house up to 300 employees, features a dorm-like conference space  and a cafeteria that serves three high-quality meals per day.


And then there is Google. Google's offices are like nothing else in the world, featuring benchmark architecture, a futuristic, yet comfortable feel and everything necessary to allow employees to get a great deal of progress done each workday. Take the Google Earth machine, which is about as close as it gets to looking down from outer space while still being grounded. Slides that take employees from one floor to another may sound like something out of a cartoon, but at Google they are a reality. 

The Takeaway for Today's Start-Ups

Start-up business owners can learn a lot from the offices of Facebook and Google. The key takeaway here is that catering to the needs of employees is the best way to ensure you've got a productive and happy staff on your side. 

Offering free dry cleaning services, for example, or an area of the office specifically devoted to decompressing are just two things that might entice your workers to avoid performing their tasks at home. Spruce up your office cubicles, outfit the space with attractive, modern furniture and don't hesitate to add fun, whimsical artwork where appropriate. Perhaps most importantly, "tear down the walls" and make your office space as collaborative and socially-oriented as possible. Socializating(within limits) keeps employees' spirits up, and should never be discouraged in the workplace. 

Telecommuting is here to stay, and there's little that a company can do to change this. When the right office environment is available to work in, however, working from home becomes far less enticing than it might otherwise be. 

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