Meet Patrick Mesterton, Founder and CEO of Epicenter. He founded Epicenter based on an identified need for a new type of model for the workspace. A space where new ideas could be born, where companies could collaborate and really grow. Epicenter was founded on the premise to become the first working innovation ecosystem. In this interview, Patrick tells us more on his experience in using the workspace to fuel your business growth.
– During our years of opening Epicenter houses internationally we have seen that the workspace needs to be much more than just a physical space to bring value to a company and their employees. Our member companies have successfully found a way to make the workspace a tool for their growth, Patrick explains.
Patrick also means that one of the most important roles that the workspace plays is in recruitment – especially for fast growing digital companies.
– From the report we released together with AMF Fastigheter earlier in 2022, we asked 1000 office workers about their view on the workspace. More than 80% of them said that they would consider turning down a job if the workspace didn’t meet their requirements. That’s a big number and something you can’t duck if you’re building a business, Patrick continues.
“More than 80% of them said that they would consider turning down a job if the workspace didn’t meet their requirements”
With this fact in mind, the most important part in making sure your workspace fuels your company growth is to make sure that it’s attractive for new employees. The best way to succeed with this is to constantly keep a close ear to what your employees need from the space they work from. A common factor found in the report is location.
– No matter what, your team will always value a strong location of the office. Both in terms of transportation but also how well the office is connected to other things they find valuable such as restaurants, industry colleagues at other companies, and social activities.
The second part of building a workspace strategy for growth is by making the office a tool for establishing your company culture. Make it attractive for your team to work from the office and facilitate collaboration and creation at the office. This also adds new demands on the design of the workspace.
– A workspace for growth should be designed for social interaction with focus on knowledge sharing, networking and collaboration. This means new types of spaces where creative spaces meet digital zones, Patrick explains.
If traditionally a workspace was a space to find focus in your own work it is today rather a place where you work together with others. Patrick means that this is mainly due to the fact that the way companies measure productivity has changed.
– For innovative companies being productive doesn’t mean to sit alone in front of your computer but instead to create and invent new solutions together. That’s the output their team wants from working, says Patrick.
A final but important factor to consider when creating an office for growth is of course the cost. An office is usually a large cost for any company to bear but being a fast scaling company adds the pressure of not being able to fully predict the future financial situation of your company. This means that a lot of companies today need more flexible contracts that could support their growth plans.
– Many of the companies that we work with can’t sign a traditional contract of multiple years. They don’t know where they’ll be by the end of that contract. Instead we have found a way to offer highly flexible contracts that smoothly changes with the current needs of a company and their employees, says Patrick.