The real point of these ramblings is to talk about the aspects that we think are crucial to building a great office atmosphere. We have all worked in, and are familiar with various office environments, both good and bad. When we started out on the Hayward Hawk journey, we pooled all of our thoughts together of how would build and shape our office and working environment. For a rapid growth company, this is one of the most important aspects of building and scaling effectively, so we had to get it right.
So OK, you have pizza and beer Fridays, you go on outdoor pursuits weekends, you go on golfing weekends away…but what if employees are not loving the work space they are in every single day?
HERE ARE 8 TOP TIPS THAT WE THOUGHT WERE MOST IMPORTANT WHEN CREATING THE HAYWARD HAWK OFFICE ENVIRONMENT - WE CALL IT THE ‘HAWKS NEST’.
Stay organized and keep your work space tidy. Whether you are a CEO or a trainee, we all have lots of paperwork to manage on our desks. It is hard to keep having a tidy desk at the top of our priorities. That’s not forgetting the filing and organization of contracts, forms, training material, scanned documents, stationary etc. Poor organization impacts motivation, timekeeping and ultimately productivity. Keep a tidy office, keep a tidy personal desk space, and don’t get lazy with document management.
Make it functional, but keep it comfy. This was exactly our thought when we sat down to think about filling out the office space. We wanted to create an environment where there were no barriers to carry out your work, no matter the individual style. If you like double screens, if you like using a laptop, if you like being on your feet, if you like taking time in a breakout room, if you like writing on any wall in the office etc. We have made allowances and provided the equipment to make all of this possible, because where is the logic in creating barriers to your employees being productive?
P.S.. We bought dual white TV screens to use as monitors…not essential, but we love them. And our breakout room? We like to call it “The Hawktagon”.
This is the layout of the new BRS Golf/GolfNow office in Belfast (http://bit.ly/2dmon9f-Check out this link) - WOW!
Make it a collective. Making the office more of a collective feel and less like a group of un-connected working individuals is pretty crucial in creating a productive, functional and happy office environment. This fact is highlighted even more in a small startup - we know! Everyone has to buy into the collective idea for it to work. Simple things such as saying thanks, team lunches/breakfast-we have our craft beer club every Friday for example. Always encourage collaboration, brainstorming and always make time to help colleagues with difficult tasks (regardless of title or how busy you are). Lastly, we measure success based on the overall team’s performance and ability to hit targets. Individual targets are important, but we succeed and fail, always as a team.
Windows. An office with natural light is must in our book. Poor lighting can lead to a range of health issues including blurred vision, headaches, eyestrain etc. none of which conducive to productivity. On the other hand, a well-lit office can keep your team energized and from falling asleep even before the 4pm slump. For us, the big windows mean that we can keep an eye out for our favourite busker on Arthur street- https://twitter.com/ConorRuaScott
Encourage collaboration.No matter the shape, layout or size of your office, always make sure you have dedicated spaces that employees can collaborate and be creative. The camaraderie that is built is infectious, the creativity will spawn new ideas and the team will be more bought into their work and their colleagues. The collaboration should also feed into the wider theory that everyone’s ideas and thoughts will be heard. Of course decisions have to made, and certain ideas are not always possible to realise. However it is the platform to foster these ideas that really counts.
Make training a priority. The vast majority of employees want to excel and to do good work. As employers, we need to give them the right tools to succeed, and quite a portion of this comes from training. It might be a bit extreme in some cases to have a corporate university like Facebook or the famous McDonalds Hamburger University, but structure is key. There needs to be a clear communication of goals and progress and a consistency with sessions rather than the more commonly found sporadic and haphazard approach. Luckily, we have access to some of the best personalized recruitment training which we are about to roll out across the companyhttp://www.recruitmentguide.com
Consider some perks. Pretty self-explanatory. Employees love being treated like they are the best, and often this leads to them performing like they are. Here are some links we found highlighting some of the best perks out there.
Always start a Monday morning with a themed quiz. ALWAYS.
So far we have covered recruitment, US presidents, Irish history, James Caan, DB Cooper, Capital cities, Olympic history, emerging technologies, UFC…It might not directly improve our recruitment skills, but boy are we primed for a pub quiz!