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Smaller spaces beat bigger boardrooms

What we can learn from 75m square feet

I canceled my work space membership. 4 visits across 4 months - all in the first 45 days. For me, it didn’t fit. Plenty of space for different kinds of work; planned and ad-hoc calls, deep work, good enough amenities, pleasant staff, a cadence of community activities. It just couldn’t beat the flexibility and convenience of my home office.

When deciding on whether to keep or cancel, I realized that what I was looking for, wasn’t what the space could provide.

The value of any shared space is, well, who you share it with. The camaraderie, collaboration, and community that a shared space can bring to colleagues and the value it bestows on the host firm is unmatched. And, knowing how to facilitate that is maybe the most important task that workplace leaders (and thoughtful company execs) can solve.

These related insights leap of the page of the Verge Sense Occupancy Intelligence report:

  • Collab spaces > Boardrooms: average room occupancy is 1.9 people (even the largest tracked space, averages <3 of 12 seats taken). More, smaller spaces are in demand, and having room inventory helps remove barriers from in-office collab.

  • Ad hoc meetings account for 27% of room usage: not all work is scheduled. New ideas, work obstacles, or even ‘difficult conversations’ can pop-up at any time - having space available to discuss intimately is helpful in the moment.

  • Midweek peak: Tues/Wed/Thurs max out at~1/4th office capacity (Americas): we may have come a long way since COVID, but overall, the amount of space is far beyond our needs. Some self-correcting is expected once long-term leases expire. Still, though, it seems that companies are holding too much unoccupied space.

There’s something great about working and  getting together that outpaces simply getting work done. For those of you that can, cherish those serendipitous moments of badging in, riding an elevator with, or waiting for a microwave (no fish, though, please).

Insights via: Verge Sense Occupancy Intelligence Report, Q3 2023 

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