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Office of the Future: A Techie and a Teen Share Their Office Needs

Selecting office space for tech firm January Advisors is 99% about the community around it, founder Jeff Reichman told attendees to Bisnow's Workplace of the Future. He's in a nice building now and is seeing the benefit of it, so that number may inch down, but Jeff says his employees don't care much for a building with all the bells and whistles if they're in a cool area with great people. Young, entrepreneurial companies usually put their office decisions last and want small built-out space, he says. Many are starting to just rent meeting space and not bother with desks, and all need low price points. Now that his company's built out a nice office, Jeff says a mix of spaces is really important to him and his employees. When he's writing code, he needs to be in a silent area and left alone. But if he needs to knock out emails, he prefers something more vibrant; he might even take a long lunch and go through his inbox at a restaurant. 

High school junior Claire Melcher gave attendees some firsthand knowledge of the younger generation’s workstyle. She says she’s always being told to take care of her mental health and to take frequent breaks, so the ability to do that is important to her in an office. What’ll get her to come into the office, knowing she can work from anywhere? Making sure she can work from anywhere within the office. Claire says having tech throughout the building (she mentioned iPad screens on the treadmill) will keep her engaged and productive throughout the day. (As Jeff says “Tech is the mortar between the bricks.”) School has been prepping Claire to work more collaboratively, she says—recently, many of the long straight tables were swapped out for round tables for more group work. Here’s Claire with our first panel: Parkway Properties managing director Mike Fransen, PDR principal Lauri Goodman Lampson, Arch-Con SVP Brad Jameson, Headquarters partner Mark Licata and OpenWork partner Drew Jones.