Handling an Office Remodel
It’s not easy working around the mess and chaos
Five simple steps can help you and your team navigate an office remodel or redesign. It won’t make it easy, but it will be a lot less painful. Rest assured, there is no way around the fact that an office space remodelling will impact your employees and your business.
It’s All About Communication
If you have any experience with change management practices, now would be a good time to activate them. Your people need to know what is coming, how much it might impact them, and most importantly, they need to know Why you are making the change.
Don’t get fooled by thinking that you’ll distract them with shiny new computer monitors. If your staff doesn’t understand why the parking lot is a mess, why the bathrooms are closed, or why the kitchen access is cut-off, they will grow upset as the complications and detours add up.
That said, when your employees are in the loop, you will find that they understand the payoff they will receive for their temporary discomfort. Will this redesign help drive new business? Will it make everyone more money in the long run? Tell your people!
Communication with your contractor and his or her crew is essential as well. Let the people doing the remodelling work know what it is you do, how you use your office, and what functions are essential to your success. Be sure to let them know who they should ask before turning off power, cutting water, or rebooting the internet.
Involve The Team
Whenever and wherever possible, involve the whole staff in the process. Try a survey or a casual meeting where you ask what they would like to see different. You might be surprised by how good they are at assessing what is missing from your current design.
When the construction runs over, or when your staff is displaced from their usual parking spots, you will find your staff much more amenable to change if they have been involved in some aspect of the process.
You cannot know everything. You might be shocked to find out what your employees have identified as an issue in your office. You can multiply the impact of your redesign by casting a much wider net as you seek input.
Know Your Business
If you’re a customer facing business like a storefront, you already know the value of the appearance and function of your office. Many of you, though, will need to spend some real time considering what you do and how you do it best.
If your team is full of engineers who work on specific, individual components, an open and airy space is likely a distraction, whereas if you run a sales team out of the office and you encourage collaboration, you probably want as few walls and closed-off spaces as possible.
Before you make any design decisions, get out a pad of paper or pull open the Notes app and give real consideration to how your space could be optimized to match the way you do business.
Keep It Clean
Construction means dust. It also means old desks and sofas leaving the office as new ones arrive. You need a proven, trusted junk hauler like Go Trashy, the junk removal app. Don’t let old desks take over your lobby. You are dealing with enough stuff. Get things hauled out and cleaned up right away.
Double the cleaning crew frequency. It’s an expense you’ll be glad you made after you arrive to see the office covered in dust and construction messes. It’s not for the long term, just while the remodel is being completed.
Don’t Quit When the Crew Does
Your redesign isn’t done when the construction crew leaves. You need to hone and optimize the space. You will likely find one or two things about the new design that drive you or your team nuts. Don’t waste time. Get those things fixed or adjusted so that you can move on to the next thing. As we all know, there is always another issue coming your way.
This is another great time to survey or involve the team. Ask them what they like and don’t like. Remember, though, that all change takes some time to appreciate, so don’t rush to put things back to the way they were. There was a reason you made the change in the first place.
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