Why would having a physical office be so important to a growing business? Does it really make any difference? Can’t we all just work remotely?
There’s a certain irony to a small business wanting to create a more ‘officey’ environment. I mean, isn’t it most people’s dream to work from home? The idea of rolling out of bed straight onto the job (or perhaps not even leaving your bed) is just the best.
Here are 10 solid reasons why a growing business needs an office:
1. It’s a place to call HQ
Employees find it reassuring to be able to relate the business they work for to somewhere that actually exists – the ‘home’ of their company. It’s also a central place where they know their boss either works or is invested in, and that builds confidence in your brand from the inside.
It also makes you as the boss feel more aware of your colleagues and employees.
2. It’s a recognisable ‘precinct’ for customers
Customers – and even more importantly potential customers – might find it hard to grasp the idea of a company with no permanent office or base. It reminds me of that scene in the 2005 movie 40-Year-Old Virgin with Steve Carell and Catherine Keener. Keener’s character runs an eBay store but still has a shop front.
Ok, it’s a lampooned scenario but the logic is, in fact, pretty good. People like to be able to see the bricks-and-mortar side to a company they’re about to spend money with.
3. Business-level infrastructure and connectivity
Think about how many times your internet drops out or slows down at home –even if you’re on a pretty good plan. Offices as a general rule have better connectivity. If all of your employees have access to this, it’s going to make them happy and work quality’s going to improve.
4. Professional image
This is an obvious one, but it’s true. Having premises that allow you to give interested parties a physical address sets the bar for your professionalism and how serious you are. It also suggests that there’s a level of success that requires you to have an office in the first place.
5. A place to interview and host
An office gives you facilities where you can stage interviews with customers or job applicants, and also a place to hold events. Meeting in a local café is great – especially for an informal chat – but it’s not ideal if you’re looking for somewhere that makes an impression.
Your office will also give you a place to meet with team members to thrash out ideas and keep the ball moving.
6. A place to meet, collaborate and build a community
Never underestimate the power of the water cooler. One of the biggest perks for employees is the sense of community they can find at work. People meet their life-long best friends at work. This is so much less likely to happen if you’re all working remotely.
7. Fewer distractions
Working from home has a reputation – and it’s only mostly true. Having worked from home myself, I know how household chores can interrupt the workflow, and people tend to think you’re just at home and not actually working.
An office environment keeps you focused – although you have to be careful not to make the office too austere at the same time.
The office gives people boundaries. It’s a work environment above all else. Working from home or other places around town, the lines get blurry. I love this funny BuzzFeed article on the problems working from home – and though meant as a joke, it’s only funny because there are elements of truth to it.
I’m allowed to say this because I work, predominantly, from my home office.
Most people (and before you get over-excited, that really means ‘not everyone’) find working at their desk in an office environment more productive. You feel more professional.
It’s a bit like when you have casual Friday or when you dress up for work, your whole tone feels different. Above all, an office gives you a time to get up and start work and – just as importantly – a time to knock off.
There’s nothing quite like face-to-face communication. I wonder if any technology will really ever be able to beat it. Seeing and speaking to the person you’re working with or a client you’re working for makes everything real and makes more sense of what you’re doing. It’s the easiest and quickest way to build rapport.
So what’s the big news with The Copy Collective HQ?
As you’ve probably noticed, The Copy Collective is growing all the time. We’ve got to the stage now where we need a space in the heart of Sydney to make ourselves more available to our staff and our valued clients.
And we want to do all the stuff we’ve listed above, of course! So as of 1 June, we’ll be combining our Sydney offices into one single central location at 185 Elizabeth Street.
We’ll be perfectly located right opposite Hyde Park, near several train stations and a wealth of bus routes. Plus our new building has a stunning heritage façade, which you might just find us standing outside admiring during our lunch breaks!
We’re so excited about this move, and we can’t wait to watch our business develop and bloom in these amazing new premises.
Here’s our new address for you to update our contact details now:
The Copy Collective
Suite 317, 185 Elizabeth Street