Making Meaning of a Millennial Workplace

The moment we all feared is finally here. The last of the Millennial Generation is entering the workplace and Gen Z is rising up fast behind them.

In fact, this year, Gen Z is predicted to surpass the Millennial population, with the two generations combined making up 60% of the world’s total population.

Millennials Aren’t Special

Regardless of what generation you are a part of, there’s no denying the Millennials have been a media obsession and the butt end of jokes for the past few decades. Despite the constant coverage, science actually states that the Millennial Generation acts almost exactly the same in their 20s and 30s as every generation before did in their 20s and 30s. Sounds fake, but it makes sense. In some cases, Millennials are even less radical in their young adulthood than their generational counterparts — yes, that statement is directed to you, Boomers.

Considering their size and rise of technology, Millennials quickly became a hyper-sensationalized topic. So much so that there are over 17 billion Google results for articles on industries that Millennials are supposedly responsible for “killing.” So, the Y2K panic that settled in surrounding how Millennials will change the workplace was no surprise.

Starting in the early 2000s, the new Millennials found themselves entering a workforce of stigma and predisposed hatred. The media spent a decade painting a dystopian future of human-turned-robots drooling at a desk surrounded by screens, unable to engage in the present around them. Even movies perpetuated the idea of Millennials bringing selfish, lazy, and impractical attitudes to every industry with big silver screen titles like “The Intern” and “The Internship.”

The Millennial Dream

The reality of the situation is that Millennials crave the same that everyone else did at their age: love, purpose, and meaning in their work.

With technology, Millennials had the means to successfully pursue those values.

For previous generations, change on a massive scale was often an insurmountable institution. Voicing a desire to work in an office that reflected the same values and morals of the employee was the same as wishing on a star: spoken words sent into a void without any course of action.

The Millennial dream isn’t an original idea. People searching for purpose in their lives and meaning in their work make up the primary storylines of human existence.

Maybe it was the technology, maybe it was the size of their generation or a combination of both but Millennials took their simple little dream and radicalized the world. They went on to challenge the mold of consumerism, communication, and capitalism.

Office Utopia

Ultimately, what the younger generation is seeking isn’t radical at all. In fact, studies show that their goals align with the same goals as their older colleagues. A working Millennial is looking for the following in a career:

  • Salary
  • Stability
  • Benefits
  • Flexibility
  • Personal connection

In exchange, the workplace “babies” are bringing once rare skills to the table. These young digital immigrants and digital natives thrive in environments that allow for collaborative teamwork and emphasize goals.
Their “Carpe Diem” attitude means they will pursue a job and purpose that meets their criteria without fear of floating from job to job until they’ve found success — however they choose to define that word for themselves. Today’s society allows Millennials to follow their prerogative of a higher purpose, rewarding the office environments that make proper treatment of their employees a central objective of their process.

You Get What You Pay For

As an employer ourselves, we suggest embracing a Millennial perspective in the office. As the classic saying goes, “You get what you pay for.” If you are paying minimum wage, it shouldn’t be surprising to receive minimum effort from your employees in return. Millennials have shown that they are masters of the figurative two-way street. In a trade of goods and services, Millennials are firm in trading in terms of equal or greater value.

Gone are the days when authority and promises were viable options for compensation. In the face of rising living costs but stagnant wage prices, this generation and the one following will be prioritizing how to live sustainably without compromising their ideals. This means that workplaces will need to start prioritizing benefits, flexibility, community, and interestingly enough, collaborative office spaces.

How To Evolve

Because teamwork and technology are two of the most words in a Millennial’s work experience vocabulary, your office should be equipped to entertain both of those comfortably. Here at Fractal, we have created several options for office plans that capitalize on how Millennials and younger generations work best.

Maximizing your workspace to best meet your employees’ needs and wants is a smart move for today’s workforce. While long-term changes might be in store for your company (benefits aren’t instilled overnight!), an immediate change to the physical office is always a good idea. Focusing on creating open and collaborative spaces best fits with the preferred communication style of Millennials.

Call Fractal today to discuss the best options for transforming your office place into one that works as well for your employees as they do for you.

Welcome to Fractal Coworking!

Fractal: Collaborative Workspaces for Your Business

Hello! Welcome to Fractal! Our office spaces are designed to feature both elements of design and collaborative workspaces to inspire your employees. We understand that productivity is important for a business, but when employees are cooped up in less than desirable work conditions, they are less likely to succeed. If you are looking for a place to house your business that has the features needed to inspire your workers, Fractal Coworking can help.

Unique Design Elements For Creative Workspaces

At Fractal Coworking, we are proud to provide businesses with workspaces for rent that offer stimulating environments. Without inspiration, your employees won’t be able to innovate or think outside of normal conventions. In a comfortable, quiet, and expressive environment, your workers can gain new perspectives and feel better about their work. It might seem odd, but your work environment does a lot to the productivity of your workers. If they are enclosed by four white walls and a black-and-white-clock on the wall all day, they are bound to burn out and search for work elsewhere. With our workspaces, your business can gain a competitive edge by adopting a creative workspace that excites workers.

Collaborative Workspaces

Collaborative workspaces have a way to encourage inclusive conversation and help businesses communicate more efficiently, both for business and general socialization among workers. If you are in need of collaborative, open-concept office spaces, Fractal Coworking has something to offer you. Though there is plenty of benefit to working in your own independent workspace, collaborative areas are able to provide more inclusive spaces for co-workers to feed off of each others energy, ideas, and enthusiasm.
It is in these collaborative spaces that the most exciting work can be created. It is important that businesses encourage collaborative thinking among workers. Collaboration is what can guarantee that your employees get to know each other and learn for each other’s processes. If you want a more cohesive business, collaborative work environments and the best way to achieve this.

Independent Workspaces For Quiet Study

However, not all projects need to be a team-bonding experience. If you have certain workers or projects that are better suited for independent workspaces, Fractal Coworking can offer that too! With Fractal, we provide excellent spaces to work on our patio, a lounge, a desk, or your own private office. If you would like your own independent office to work, we can offer you a rentable space to be your work done. We have plenty of different types of workspaces, depending on how you would like to work.

Business Offices for Rent

At Fractal Coworking, all of our work areas are available for rent. This means that you won’t have to struggle to afford to own your offices. Instead, you can choose to pay Fractal Coworking monthly rent for your offices. This can be a huge benefit, as your offices can be simply paid for on a month-to-month basis. So, if you decide to work somewhere else, or your project is complete, you don’t have to continue paying for a space you aren’t using. Visit our website to view our pricing options. And, if you would have to use a different payment plan, you can speak with one of our representatives.

Fractal Coworking

Contact Fractal Coworking today to learn more about your options for collaborative or independent workspaces.

Why Sitting is Bad For Your Health

Sitting Can Affect Every Aspect of Your Life

Nearly 86 percent of the American population sits at a desk for their jobs. According to recent studies, however, sitting at your desk for extended period is actually bad for you. But, how? In this blog, we will discuss some of the ways that classic office spaces are bad for your health.
If you are craving an alternative workspace to get the job done, Fractal has a wide variety of work areas for you to choose from. All you have to do is select the type of workspace you would like and select how long you would like to rent out that space. That’s it! Now you can have your own private work area, the way you want it.

Classic Offices Can Destroy Your Health

“Sitting is the new smoking,” or at least according to researcher, Ryan Fiorenzi. Fiorenzi has found that standing or shifting your body every eight minutes could reduce your chances of cancer, types 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and back pain. These are just some of the risk factors to sitting for extended periods of time, however, a desk job poses a lot more health risks than things like cancer or heart disease. No, there are actually a lot more health risks to your job than you might think. The following are just some of the ways your health is negatively impacted.

Back Damage

Back damage is the most obvious health concern when it comes to desk jobs. When you are sitting and hunched over a computer, your back and joints are strained. According to Dr. Joan Vernikos, former director of NASA’s Life Sciences Division, ”We weren’t designed to sit.” Our bodies need to be in perpetual motion to function properly. So much of ourselves rely on motion to heal and carry on with everyday functions. For instance, our muscles are meant to be used. When we sit for eight-to-10 hours a day, our muscles aren’t given the exercise they need.
It is important to understand that just because you have a desk job, does not mean you are guaranteed to have health problems. Today, there are plenty of work areas and companies that encourage moving around and taking regular breaks from work. You are only in danger of health issues when you are not standing or moving around throughout your day. Cubicle desks are notoriously terrible for your health because they are constructed to box you in and keep you from leaving. Detaching from a cubicle desk is much harder than an open layout workspace.

Metabolic Damage

Cubicle, or classic office spaces, are bad for your health in more ways than just physical. Metabolic digestion is also affected by sitting long hours at a desk. And, if you decide to skip breakfast to either get more sleep or get more work done, you are doing more damage to your body than you would think. Our bodies need food to properly function. Without it, cognition is slowed and our stress levels are raised. Not only are digestive issues a problem, but your blood pressure and heart health are also at risk. If you choose to skip a meal, studies have shown that you are at a greater risk to develop high blood pressure, obesity, and heart issues.
Most people, when they are hungry, also get irritable or grouchy. Because of this fact, if you are hungry at work because you have skipped a meal, your attitude towards your job may be altered. For instance, small things can affect you more and your co-workers can upset your faster. Having a bad attitude at work is the fastest way to ensure you won’t be well liked or, most likely, have a job in the near future.
Movement is essential to digestion. Without movement, our stomachs aren’t able to process our food fast enough. When your metabolism is slow, fats and sugars are more readily stored at fats. That means, by sitting at a desk for an extended period of time, you could be causing digestive and metabolic issues for yourself.

Emotional Damage

Sitting at a desk, confined by four white walls has more consequences than just physical. Mentally and emotionally you can suffer from sitting all day at your desk. Humans were not meant to be sequestered at their desks. Having a choice on how you work is so vital to how you feel about your job and your life. Having a workspace that you can move around in and even stand up from time to time can do wonders for your emotional state.
Part of enjoying a job is feeling like your employers care about your well being. Having a flexible workspace that caters to your needs is one of the reasons people enjoy their jobs. However, in classic offices spaces and cubicle desk spaces, this feeling of consideration is lost. After all, cubicles are caging and boring, and don’t account for your needs of physical and mental breaks.
Sitting at a desk all day also can wear down your self-confidence. When you enter a routine of doing the same job day in and day out, you don’t allow yourself any mobility — in any aspect of your life. That means, that you can stay stationary doing the same job, even though you know it doesn’t make you happy. You can feel like you are too comfortable in your current routine to move to a different position or even to a better job.

Sleep Damage

Sitting at a desk can even affect the way you sleep. For instance, if you are stationary all day, your body can get restless in the middle of the night. As stated earlier in this blog, humans weren’t meant to sit for long periods of time. Our bodies naturally ache to move around, which means that your body can choose to become restless when you need to be sleeping. Lack of sleep is one of the fastest ways to have an emotional breakdown and ruin your chances of doing well at your job. Not sleeping, sitting too much, and performing poorly at your job is just an endless cycle that you alone can break.

Fractal Coworking

If you are tired of the classic office space and are craving a different workspace, contact Fractal Coworking today. We can offer you a workspace that you would like to work in. Visit our website and choose which type of workspace would work best for you. At Fractal, we can provide you with a flexible workspace that is attuned to your desires as a worker. Hopefully, by having a space that enables free mobility, you can learn to change your work style and improve your health. Contact us today to learn more about our workspaces for rent.

The History of Office Design

Office Design: The Evolution of Desks and Chairs

It has been reported that at least 86 percent of Americans work sitting at a desk. With most of the population sitting with a desk and a chair, there has got to be a history design behind the styles of office design. Well, there is!
Around the world, people have been innovating new ways to set up their offices in a way that improves productivity, while also enhancing a sense of community. Just like everything else, office design has seen an evolution over the years.
In this blog, we will be discussing the evolution of office design and how the layout of an office can affect workers. If you are currently looking for an office space for your team or business, Fractal, in Ontario, has exactly what you are looking for! At Fractal, you can rent well-designed office spaces for monthly use. And, each of our offices are crafted to incorporate both elements of design and functionality, which means that you can receive a beautiful office space that has a layout to promote worker efficiency.

The Very First Office

Though it can be argued that the first office spaces began long before the 18th century, our history timeline will begin in England in the 1700s. During this time, the British Empire was growing at a rapid rate, as explorers journeyed over oceans to find new worlds. In their discoveries, these explorers found many different goods and resources to bring back to England. With the new market of goods from the New World, trade was at an all-time high for the British. Because of this, the first office building had to be erected in 1726 to keep up with the incoming shipments. This building was known as the Old Admiralty Office and served to handle the masses of paperwork generated by the Royal Navy.
The office space was used to conduct meetings and was later also used as the Admiralty Board Room. This room was necessary to organize how all the documents would be stored, the processes for filing the paperwork, and how many more shipments of goods they would need. Today, The Old Admiralty Office is still in use, but still holds the title of the very first office space.

Taylorism Office Design

The Old Admiralty Office was the first office, but bigger companies would soon follow. For example, The East India Trading Company adopted their own office building that would act as their headquarters to sort through the paperwork of the company. Innovations to office design didn’t happen again until the 20th century. The new office design was called Taylorism and emphasised efficiency and rigid schedules and layouts. The term was named Taylorism by the mechanical engineer, Frank Taylor, who created the office arrangement to maximize industry efficiency.
Though Taylorism created an office space that demanded high performance, there have been many critics of Taylorism. And, as psychology and the study of social efficiency formed and evolved, more people condemned this style of office design.
Taylorism depends on workers being lined up in straight lines and being packed closely together. In the 20th century, factories were filled with workers, all an elbow apart. Taylorism’s main flaw was that it did not consider the worker’s personal space or enjoyment of their job. Instead, Taylorism was purely concerned with achieving results and reaching the maximum level of productivity.

Skyscrapers Change Minds

While Taylorism was in full effect, there were other innovations that were taking place that would revolutionize the way people worked. Skyscrapers were being built in cities across the USA and in the UK. This new way of creating large buildings changed the way that people believed they should work. With the invention of the skyscraper, other innovations were possible, and were included in these buildings, such as electricity, air conditioning, elevators, and phone systems. With all of these changes to the location people worked, this meant that they could reconsider how they worked. This gave birth to the open plan office design.

The Open Office Plan

With the invention of the skyscrapers and other commercial buildings, workplaces could alter their spacious offices to be arranged in different ways. For instance, private offices and open plan workstations became increasingly popular. This style allowed leaders and executives to rise above and gain their own personal offices, while workers were able to have more room to do their work.

This revolution in design initially began due to the innovated designs by Frank Lloyd Wright in 1939. Wright designed the new office space for The Johnson Wax company, and created one of the first open office plans that revolutionized how office spaces could be built. The office Wright had designed was created to increase productivity, but also consider the lives of the workers. For instance, the office spaces features elements such as bright lighting, warm colors, and high, cork ceilings. The warm colors had the intention of making the workers comfortable at their desks, while the cork ceiling was designed to absorb the acoustic of the office, such as the general noises and the sounds of the typewriters.

Bürolandschaft

In the early 1960s, the changing times gave way to newer office plans. For instance, socially democratic layout plans were encouraged in the work force, mainly because they encouraged interactions between workers. This attention to the socialization of workers became an office design known as Burolandschaft.

The german office layout advocated for less rigid office landscapes and encouraged teams to be grouped together. Due to this layout, office spaces began to group into teams and gain collaborative advantages. For example, communication was much more efficient and teams were able to form their own communities. Not only that, but different levels of managerial staff were able to communicate and form friendships much more easily. Ultimately, this style of office plan increased worker enjoyment and performance.

Cubicle Farm

Though the 1960s and 1970s were both progressive eras for office design, the 1980s retracted those evolutionary steps with the introduction of the cubicle farm. Instead of using open concepts and collaborative office landscapes, the cubicle farm introduced closed off, individual workspaces. This digression was devastating for office design, especially because the 60s and 70s had embraced open layouts so drastically. Instead, the cubicle format of working, used small, individual desks that were closed off by three walls. It was suspected that by being closed off, workers would be able to focus and get more work done. However, this office design had intense backlash, as the office design increased depression and burnout rates among workers.

Offices Today

Today, offices can incorporate many different types of designs. However, as technology has evolved, people are not bound to their desks like they used to be. Many workers can work remotely, or work in coffee shops, their homes, or in the lounges of their office buildings. Because there is no need for large computer monitors anymore, workers have adopted a new system getting their work done. With the invention of laptops, workers can be one-the-go and get their work done the way they want to. Many companies have embraced this free open space plan, and have encouraged workers to use open workspaces, such as lounges, meeting rooms, and other collaborative spaces to work and socialize with others.

Fractal Coworking Business Offices For Rent

At Fractal, we can help your business find the offices space right for you. Whether you believe open space office plans are for you or you would like workers to work independently, we have many different office plans available to you. If you would like to check out our office plans, visit our website today!

Do Collaborative Workspaces Work For Businesses?

Psychology Explains: Do Collaborative Workspaces Work?

The study of psychology tries to understand why humans behave the way that they do. As we have evolved, so have our work habits; instead of swinging from vines, we now work at desks. Psychology tries to understand this evolutionary change and how humans have adapted to it. For instance, how do humans respond to work environments, what makes them feel comfortable, and what factors encourage workflow?
In this blog, we will be discussing how a collaborative workspace can psychologically encourage your employees to work better and faster.

Established Sense of Community

Even before your workers get started on their jobs, they need to know that they are being ushered into a welcoming work environment. More importantly, your business should establish that new workers can go to other workers to ask questions about their job. When you foster a more inclusive environment, you are much more likely to give your business a comfortable feeling. Workers who are ignored or punished when they ask questions, are less likely to feel like their work environment supports them. Businesses should learn to support their workers, especially when they are learning how to do their job. Expecting that someone is hired and doesn’t require a learning curve isn’t realistic.
Aside from establishing an inviting community, you should also make sure that you show off the sense of community that your offices can bring. One of the major benefits of a collaborative work environment is that socialization among co-workers is increased. By having an open area to work, employees feel more inclined to converse with each other, not just for business-related topics. Of course, this can be a double-edged sword, as socialization in business can also diminish productivity. However, with a better sense of community, workers can feel more comfortable to work, which can have an effect on the overall quality of their work.

Increase Communication and Idea Creation

In collaborative environments, ideas are able to be shared. Communication in these types of work environments is also magnified, as workers don’t have to travel or dial a number to contact their co-workers. In an open space, workers can communicate effectively and create new ideas. Better still, these ideas can be built off of each other, which can catapult ideas from small thoughts to real-life innovations.
Though collaboration can be an exciting prospect for businesses, psychology also warns about natural human behavior. For instance, the psychological phenomenon, Groupthink, is always a concern for businesses. This means that a group of people wish to agree on the same things in order to maintain a sense of unity and conformity. As a result of this, ideas and thoughts can be skewed to benefit the group and can alter decision-making processes.
Groupthink can be a dangerous concept for businesses, especially ones that expect to thrive and innovate. However, there are ways to make sure that groupthink does not happen to your office. In corporate businesses, collaborative workspaces can keep people engaged to think of new ideas. Though groupthink can occur, with a community of workers bouncing ideas off each other, it is less likely to happen.
Also, collaborative workspaces can combat groupthink using diversity. As a business, hiring many diverse people is important. When you only hire one type of person for your business, this is when groupthink can be risky. For instance, if you hire the same demographic of workers, they are likely to think similarly. Because of this, collaborative workspaces won’t work to innovate or encourage alternative thought. Instead, your business is likely to only think one way, and very strongly.

Workers Have More Control Of Their Jobs

With collaborative environments, workers generally feel as if they have more control over their jobs. In many collaborative workspaces, they are typically open 24/7, which means workers can utilize their own space when they have a deadline or when they want to show their own progress. And, open work environments also encourage workers to take breaks. In many businesses, work can be difficult and mentally taxing, by offering an open space that encourages breaks, you are subconsciously letting your workers know you care for their well being. This can help employees feel well-supported at their job and have a better handle on their workload.

Thriving Rates and On-Going Studies

According to Harvard Business Review, researchers have studied the effects of collaborative workspaces and gathered that these spaces encourage productivity. Though co-working environments encourage breaks and socialization, they also improve a workers quality of work-life. According to a survey in which workers rated how much they were thriving at their job, collaborative workers rated their environments a six-out-of-seven. There is currently on-going research happening to try to pinpoint exactly what about co-corking environments improve employee enthusiasm.

Fractal: Business Offices for Rent

At Fractal, we offer both collaborative workspaces for rent, as well as individual desks and offices. If your business could benefit from a workspace that encourages creative thought and collaborative processes, Fractal Coworking has something to offer you. Contact us today to learn more about our office plans.

How to Introduce Workers to a New Open Office Plan

How to Introduce Workers to a New Office Plan

What separates major businesses from each other is their work culture. How a business treats their employees says a lot about their values and how they intend to succeed in business. Major corporations, such as Google, Facebook, and Microsoft, have devoted millions of dollars to the redesign of their workspaces. Why? Their primary objective was to improve the work quality of their business and invite the best minds onto their team. After all, no one wants to work somewhere they don’t like.

By having a workspace that encourages collaborative, as well as creative thought, employees feel more valued. In this blog, we will be discussing how best to introduce your workers to a new, open office plan. Through collaborative workspaces, you and your workers will be able to experience the benefits of an open office.

Office Back Then and Now

In the past, offices were plain, non-decorative, and organized in straight lines. How people worked wasn’t a concern for major businesses. Instead, all businesses cared about was their revenue numbers, nevermind the turnover rate of their employees. Workers who had regimented schedules and cage-like workspaces had their job because they needed to survive, not because they liked their employers. However, since businesses have gained so much competition in their industries, corporations constantly look for ways to give themselves advantages. One large factor to the productivity and success of a business is its workforce. Without an enthusiastic workforce, a business isn’t able to thrive or innovate. For tech companies, such as Google and Microsoft, stagnation isn’t an option; only the best and brightest minds are able to work for these types of companies. However, since these types of companies desire motivated, brilliant workers, they need to ensure that their employees enjoy working under them — hence luxurious workspaces that encourage collaborative thought.

Have a Vision for Your Workspace

As a business, you need to have certain goals. There are obviously goals you will have for your business in terms of projected revenue and success, however, you should also have goals for your work culture. For example, to have a thriving business, you want people to feel encouraged to apply and work for your company. Building a comfortable, safe, and inviting work environment should be one of your top priorities. There are two ways to build this type of work culture: hire diverse and positive people and work in an incredible building.

Why would these two things be so important? Well, your workers are what make your culture. If you hire like-minded people, there is no innovation that can occur. Also, the people you initially hire will begin the path of your work culture. This means you should look for positive people that seem friendly and intelligent.

Second, your office building is also important for your work culture. Where your employees work is essential to how they interpret the importance of their job, their individual productivity, and their enjoyment of their job.

So, once you have a vision for your business, then you have show enthusiasm for it.

Show Enthusiasm for Your Workspace

Much of your work culture derives from the attitude you portray to your workers. If you have a vision about your business, you need to be excited about it! For instance, if you are preparing your workers for a new office space, you need to be enthusiastic about the move and the new building. If you show hesitance or a distaste for your building or business, employee will perceive that and choose to have a similar viewpoint.
In a study conducted by Harvard Business Review, it was found that leaders who were positive about their new buildings and office spaces had positive feedback from their employees. It also should be noted that leaders who were not positive about their new offices spaces had their employees struggle with their workplace transition. With this being said, if you are moving into another office, or have redesigned your current office, it is important to remain positive throughout the entire transition. Without a leader’s positive attitude, workers are less likely to adapt and enjoy their work environment.

Adapt Your Workspace to Your Needs

In the workplace, it is important to encourage individualism. For most businesses, this means that workers are allowed to be themselves and adapt their workspaces to fit their needs. This can range from having their desks arranged in a certain way to even decorating their desks with personal pictures and trinkets. As a business, it is important to allow your workers to feel as comfortable as possible in their workspaces. Personalizing their own workspaces should be not only tolerated, but encouraged among workers.

Fractal Coworking

At Fractal Coworking, we have rentable workspaces for your business. By choosing our workspaces, you can gain well-designed, open, and inviting offices for your workers. At Fractal Coworking, we have incorporated elements of creative and structural design to optimize our office spaces. Contact us today if you are interested.

Live. WOrk. Play.

On your terms.

Come. find your fractal.

The Flagship

Our first flagship Fractal is strategically situated in the west end of beautiful Kingston, Ontario. When the time is right, we will advance into other small cities & suburbs. Contact us to learn more.

ADDRESS:

623 Fortune Crescent
 Kingston, Ontario K7P OL5

Hours:

Monday-Friday (8am-5pm)

CONTACT

David
Robinson

CEO

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