Creating a ‘Third Space’ in the Workplace: A Positive Move for Your Business
By definition, a ‘third space’ is a social environment that exists beyond the first space (home) and the second space (workplace), and offers the opportunity for freestyle interaction. Visit almost any coffee shop at peak times to find evidence of the human need to seek such spaces – as students, parents with pre-schoolers, and business personnel jostle for a place to congregate.
This demonstrates the value of a more relaxed space, to escape the confines of both domesticity and the structured workplace. Barriers are removed, hierarchy is less defined and free-flowing, spontaneous conversation is made all the more possible.
Businesses may often find that staff members, craving that third space, will go off-site in pairs or groups and head to the local chain or independent café for breaks and lunchtimes. And it’s not only coffee shops that fall under this category. If the weather is good, local parks become a third space outdoors and even the gym, shopping centre, library or supermarket may be places that colleagues head to together, to catch up away from their desks.
An increasing number of businesses are recognising the importance of a third space and look to create this in-house, on or near their business premises. There are a number of significant benefits in doing so:
Staff members who go off-site together are likely to organise this ahead of time. This makes it harder for someone to join them, who is busy when they are due to leave. By having space to congregate in-house, anyone who finishes a meeting or ends a call can join colleagues at a moment’s notice, so it brings a more ‘inclusive’ feel.
With no travel time needed and no peak-time queues to endure, more of that precious away time can be spent relaxing, refuelling and catching up with colleagues.
A third space at work enables impromptu meetings and conversations to happen. Spontaneity is a wonderful thing, and we all know that some of the best creative ideas come when the pressure is off.
Having a relaxed communal space where everyone is welcome will help break down barriers caused by perceived or actual hierarchy. Brainstorming away from desk areas, or formal meeting rooms, will encourage a more level playing field when it comes to contributing ideas.
Providing this space on-site means easy access to other team members or relevant information that could support any matter being discussed. Nothing needs to wait until we’re ‘back at the office’ and invariably interrupted by something more pressing!
And finally… choosing to invest in a modern, agile space for staff members to use, shows a level of commitment to their comfort, respect for interaction between team-members and value of their time. Instead of driving them off-site to seek the solace of that third space, they will have instant access to a positive and productive place.
Call us on 01252 756592 or get in touch by filling out the contact form. Let’s talk about how we can work with you to inspire and motivate your team and ensure your business image is reflected in your premises.
Cre8tive Space specialise in providing flexible, modern workplace solutions, which benefit the business by prioritising people.