How Millennials Will Change Office Space Forever
The largest generation of Americans since the Baby Boomers is entering the workforce, yet landlords are still tinkering with what amenities will lure this demographic into the office. (We're sure whatever it is, you can Instagram it.) This conundrum is why we're excited to present Bisnow's Atlanta Office Boom: The Future of the Workplace on Oct 29 at Twelve Hotels Atlanta, starting at 7am.
One of the biggest players in the Millennial-centric office world is Industrious. Panelist and founder Jamie Hodari tells us the firm hasn't even opened its first Atlanta office suites location but he's seeking a second spot in the area. On location: Industrious seeks space in walkable urban communities that are still a little raw (i.e. its first location is 1447 Peachtree and its second location won't be in Buckhead). Instead he's eyeing space in Downtown and East Atlanta.
Today's office needs ambiance to lure Millennials, he says. But some landlords think open floor plans and exposed ceilings are the bait. Design should go beyond throwing out a couple of IKEA desks and a foosball table to be cool, he says. It must also flow from connectivity to attract this workforce. For Industrious, that means individual office suites surrounding a common lounge, such as its office in Chicago, above. That's because even in our social media, smartphone-saturated culture, Millennials still want to meet face-to-face and have in-person connection, he says.
Another panelist, Childress Klein's Connie Engel (also honored last week at our Power Women awards with The Shopping Center Group's Ruth Coan and Avison Young's Tonya Creekmore) says 15 years ago, office tenants were all about plentiful parking, because companies squeezed as many people onto a floor as they could. Now companies are about squeezing as many employees as they can into cool space because office space is a battleground for luring young talent, she says. For many tenants, that means offering lounges, trendy break rooms, and common areas. “There are some companies that actually put a beer tap in the breakroom,” she says. To learn more about Millennials and work space, join us for Bisnow's Atlanta Office Boom: The Future of the Workplace Oct 29 at Twelve Hotels Atlanta, starting at 7am. Other great panelists include: Scoutmob founder Michael Tavani, Atlanta Tech Village's David Lightburn, Cousins Properties' Thad Ellis, and Marcus & Millichap's Bob Johnson.
Another great insight we picked up on the topic last week: CBRE vice chairman John Shlesinger (speaking at a CB event, far left) said he sees this trend unabated when dealing with companies. “You don't go into a meeting without hearing the word 'Millennial' right now,” he says. But there's a bifurcation in the market: large companies and small startups are embracing the trend, he says, while the middle market firms are just seeking the best rates, trying to survive.