Brett Baltz

Brett Baltz

Recent posts by Brett Baltz

4 min read

Work from Home: Is it Here to Stay in 2021? (Research & Design Tips)

By Brett Baltz on Jun 3, 2021 8:30:00 AM

The COVID-19 pandemic completely disrupted the way we live and work. To keep their employees safe, some organizations forced everyone that could to work from home, leading to early speculation that the physical office was a thing of the past. 

Topics: Work from Home
4 min read

3 Ways to Design for Continuous Learning & Development at Work in 2021

By Brett Baltz on May 25, 2021 8:30:00 AM

Learning isn't limited to a classroom. In fact, learning is a fundamental business skill. The faster an organization can facilitate the learning of its people and adapt to the unpredictable more quickly than its competitors, the more likely it is to succeed and grow. 

For employees to scale innovation and growth, they need to continuously share ideas and learn from each other in real-time, face-to-face and across locations. To put it simply, the workplace must support learning both inside and outside of the office. 

Here at Egyptian Workspace Partners, we believe every workspace can be a learning space if it's intentionally designed to support new technologies and all learning preferences. Whether it's a classroom, resource center or even a cafeteria, learning can happen anywhere

In this article, we'll take a look at three simple ways you can design for learning and development in the workplace, so you can attract and retain talent and invest in producing great employees. 

Topics: Learning & Development
6 min read

How to Recruit & Retain Top Talent Through Workplace Design in 2021

By Brett Baltz on May 18, 2021 7:30:00 AM

Good help can be hard to find, but it certainly doesn't have to be. In a world where securing top talent is a competitive advantage, employers spend too much time devising ways to attract (and retain) an exceptional workforce. 

However, most employers underestimate the importance of workplace design and its impact on recruiting top talent. If your company is struggling to attract and retain employees, it may be time to rethink your recruitment strategy and workspace. 

Here at Egyptian Workspace Partners, we believe people are every organization's greatest asset, which is why you need a well-designed workspace that attracts and retains the best talent in your industry. 

In this article, we'll take a look at the top five ways you can design a workspace that's a magnet for top-performing talent and ensures they're happy and productive, now and for years to come. 

5 Design Tips for recruiting and Retaining Top Talent

1. BUild a BetteR Workplace Brand and Culture

Attracting and retaining employees is hard work, and it's not cheap either. In fact, most estimates show that hiring a new employee can cost you thousands of dollars, which is why it makes the most financial sense to find the right fit the first time around. 

So, how exactly do you attract high-quality candidates? How do you make sure they're a perfect fit for your company? Of course, prospects are attracted to high salaries, benefits and perks, but they also want inspiring, exciting and innovative workspaces.

A great workplace speaks for itself. It speaks volumes about your company and who you want to be. It can also be a powerful tool for attracting quality candidates. And, on top of that, nothing communicates your company brand and culture more clearly than your office space. 

When you present a well-designed and branded workplace to the world, it sends a message. It reveals your company's processes, priorities and personality. Branded spaces also indicate success, thus improving employee recruitment and retention efforts (as well as client perceptions). 

Design Considerations 

  • Choose a solution with a secure platform and a wide range of connectivity options like Crestron DigitalMedia to send content anywhere
  • Incorporate customized video walls and digital wayfinding to engage your audience and draw attention to employee achievements, company news and upcoming events 
  • Make a splash with creative brand-centric design in common areas and to visually reinforce your culture and make a lasting first impression

2. Promote Wellbeing in the Workplace

Wellbeing is a competitive advantage in today's business world. After all, people want to be happy at work. They want a fulfilling role that challenges them, offers growth opportunities, and most importantly, makes them happy.

But, the answer is more complex than offering free fruit, on-site fitness centers or any other gimmicks. Instead, it's all about taking a more emotional approach to wellbeing and creating a physical work environment that supports people's physical, cognitive and emotional wellbeing

At the most basic level, employees want a workplace that prioritizes their health and safety. They want ergonomic workstations, natural light, good air quality, access to quiet zones and the ability to personalize their workspace. 

Topics: Talent Attraction & Retention
6 min read

6 Powerful Design Tips to Drive & Propel Business Growth in 2021

By Brett Baltz on May 13, 2021 7:30:00 AM

A lot has happened in the past decade. The world's economy emerged from a financial crisis, the Internet of Things exploded, mobile apps took over and a global pandemic completely changed the way we work and live. 

As people return to the workplace in a post-COVID world, organizations have ramped up a drive for growth. They realize the post-pandemic economy introduced a season of survival for companies and that it's time to establish new priorities, rally around a vision and set the stage for organizational growth. 

Here at Egyptian Workspace Partners, we believe space and office design are critical to growth. We're here to help you change the way you think about space, so your company can move the needle on real innovation and growth

In this article, we'll help you understand exactly what growth is, and how you can design a workspace that not only inspires your employees to grow, but drives and propels your organization to grow. 

6 Design Tips to Drive Business Growth In the Workplace

1. Use Big Data to Build a Better Workplace

Organizations are organic. As their business needs and people evolve, business leaders should be able to fine-tune their spaces in real time so they can respond to shifting conditions, compete and grow

For this reason, companies are looking for data-driven solutions to accurately determine facility usage and make decisions regarding future real estate utilization. When leaders have access to this type of information, they can build a resilient workplace that grows over time

Occupancy data is frequently gathered by people taking unreliable notes or casually walking by certain spaces. Unfortunately, these forms of measurement can be inaccurate, inconclusive and labor-intensive. 

Topics: Growth
5 min read

How to Create Conditions for Creativity in the Workplace in 2021

By Brett Baltz on May 4, 2021 11:00:00 AM

In a time of unprecedented change, people want to be creative at work. On top of that, business leaders know creativity can help them compete, bringing higher revenue and greater market share to their organizations. 

Topics: Business Issues Creativity & Inspiration
4 min read

4 Ways to Inspire Innovation in the Workplace in 2021

By Brett Baltz on Apr 23, 2021 8:30:00 AM

When it comes to innovation, two words say it best: more and faster. With global competition and a pandemic disrupting the world, it's clear that organizations need to embrace a mindset that fuels innovation and rapidly adapts to new possibilities. 

However, this is easier said than done. Change is always difficult, and organizations need ways to inspire this shift. In short, they need a workspace that improves the speed (and outcome) of innovation efforts

Here at Egyptian Workspace Partners, we believe the most successful organizations are made up of creative, inspired and productive individuals. But, we also know these people need high-performing spaces that make innovation happen. 

In this article, we'll help you understand exactly what innovation is, and how you can create a workspace that not only inspires innovation, supercharge your organization and shift it to grow. 

4 Ways to Inspire Innovation in the Workplace 

1. Shift from fixed to fluid modular solutions

Today's most successful teams don't just collaborate. They're constantly under pressure to move faster and be innovative, which is why they bounce back and forth from activity to activity, moving from one project to another and back again.

Topics: Innovation
4 min read

4 Ways to Design for Agility & Flexibility in the Workplace in 2021

By Brett Baltz on Apr 9, 2021 8:10:20 AM

Work is fundamentally different than it was 20, ten or even five years ago. Fueled by technological advances, cultural and economic trends and a pandemic, businesses need to work smarter and faster to accomplish more in less time

Now, organizations need an agile workplace culture that prioritizes flexibility, adaptability and speed. In short, they need an agile workplace that responds to the ever-changing needs of their business.  

Here at Egyptian Workspace Partners, we know agility can be a difficult concept to comprehend (and master), which is why we're here to educate you and walk you through the process of transforming your office into an agile, flexible workplace.

In this article, we'll break down exactly what agility and flexibility are, why you should care about these concepts and how you can successfully design for agility and flexibility in the workplace with these four simple tips. 

Agility & Flexibility in the Workplace: By Definition

What is Agility?

Agility is your organization's ability to move quickly and easily. It's not just a new work process or a new workplace, but a fundamental change in the entire work experience.

Agility takes into consideration the wide-ranging needs of the multi-generational workforce. It provides them with opportunities to carry out tasks in the workspace that best suits their needs.  

To create an agile workspace, business leaders must think holistically about three elements: people, place and technology. These elements work together to foster an agile workplace culture that prioritizes speed, innovation and employee wellbeing

What is Flexibility? 

Workplace flexibility is also about bringing people, place and technology together, but in a way that focuses on the willingness and ability to adapt to change, particularly in regard to how and when work gets done

How to Design for agility & flexibility in the workplace

1. Provide places where people want to work

Now more than ever, people want flexibility at work. In a post-COVID world, they know they can be productive anywhere, not just at the office. They want more control over when, where and how they get their work done, whether in the office or at home. 

The role of the workplace is constantly evolving. According to the Future of Workplace study by Cushman & Wakefield, 73 percent of the workforce believe their company should embrace some level of working from home. 

Going forward, the workplace will no longer be a single location but a broad ecosystem of spaces, both virtual and physical, to support employee wellbeing, strengthen cultural connection and foster creativity and innovation. 

When employees have access to an ecosystem of spaces, they have more choice over how they work. They're likely to be highly engaged and productive because they can choose from more spaces to get their jobs done and build personal connections.

Design Considerations

  • Offer an expanded variety of settings to help employees feel supported in their work
  • Install a room scheduling system like Crestron Room Scheduling or Steelcase Room Wizard so users can easily book space to focus or collaborate
  • Incorporate separate zones for individual, team and organizational needs
  • Provide seamless creativity between spaces to support the exchange of information and experiences from tools-to-tools and space-to-space

2. foster creation & collaboration with flexible furniture solutions 

High-performing teams are under pressure to move faster than ever before. These teams are constantly collaborating, generating new ideas and solving complex problems to drive innovation and growth. 

To keep up with the pace, agile teams should be able to change how they work over time. They need the flexibility to change their day-to-day activities and reconfigure their workspace to be whatever they need, as soon as they need it. 

Flexible furniture solutions, like architecture, furniture and technology, allow teams to adapt their space as fast as possible. All the pieces work well on their own, but just like teams, they work better together

For example, teams can rearrange tables and whiteboards to create dynamic neighbors. They could even divide the office space into smaller, private breakout areas to focus, gather ideas or brainstorm. 

Design Considerations

  • Install modular walls that provide you with the flexibility to reconfigure your workspace and adapt to changing business needs and potential disruptions 
  • Incorporate mobile furniture solutions like Steelcase Flex, so you can easily and quickly rearrange desks, tables, carts and markerboards on short notice 

3. Design for distributed teams with technology

Topics: Agility and Flexibility
5 min read

5 Ways to Cultivate a Collaborative Workplace Culture in 2021

By Brett Baltz on Apr 7, 2021 9:11:32 AM

No matter where you work, collaboration is important. In fact, the Steelcase Active Collaboration study found that 97 percent of global workers believe teamwork is crucial to company success, while 93 percent say it helps generate better ideas.

That being said, there seems to be a lot of confusion surrounding collaboration and how it works. Some people define collaboration as being in the same room as other people, but in reality, collaboration is far more complex than that. 

Here at Egyptian Workspace Partners, we know how challenging it can be to design for successful collaboration in your workspace, which is why we're here to help you overcome barriers and guide you through the process, every step of the way. 

In this article, we'll take a look at all the ways you can design a workspace that supports collaboration and allows your employees to come together, solve problems and generate game-changing ideas.

5 Ways to design for Collaboration in the workplace

1. Make it easy to book space with room scheduling systems 

Topics: Collaboration
6 min read

How to Build a Better Workplace Brand & Culture in 2021 (5 Design Tips)

By Brett Baltz on Apr 1, 2021 9:00:00 AM

Now more than ever, workplace brand and culture go hand-in-hand. Business leaders often view these concepts as a one-or-the-other undertaking, but that's a mistake for one simple reason.  

Your company's workplace brand and culture are permanently linked. Your company culture can drive your brand, and your brand can reinforce the culture. One doesn't change without the other. They can only evolve together in the workplace. 

At Egyptian Workspace Partners, we believe a better brand and culture are key to building a more human workplace. It's also critical to employee satisfaction and fostering a welcoming work environment where people can thrive. 

In this article, we'll help you understand the connection between brand and culture. We'll also show you how to use your space to cultivate a culture, engage your workforce and, over time, build a brand. 

Workplace Brand and Culture: What's the Difference?

What is Brand? 

In the past, the connection between the workplace and its brand was often overlooked beyond a logo or a catchy tagline. People may talk about brand more than ever, but they're still confused as to how it correlates to their workplace culture.

Brand is more than just a logo plastered on the wall or a certain color of paint. It's no longer something you can just apply to the surface of an organization. Brand is who your organization is and most importantly, what others think of you. 

What is Culture? 

Culture is the environment that surrounds you at work all the time. It's how people act when no one is looking. To put it simply, culture is the way your organization gets things done. 

In many ways, culture is the personality of your business, except it encompasses an entire group of people instead of a single person. Culture consists of a collection of qualities that indicate what is important to an organization: 

  • Behaviors are visible. They are what you see people doing or hear them saying. Being on time for meetings is a behavior. 
  • Values are invisible. Transparency accountability are values. If an organization frequently schedules meetings after 5 pm, that's a sign they may not value personal time. 
  • Norms are unwritten rules of conduct. If the organizational norm is to gather in-person for conference calls, the colleague who routinely joins remotely is straying away from the norm.
  • Rituals are patterns of behavior with personal meaning. When an entire team wears the same color each Friday to show camaraderie, that's a ritual. 
  • Artifacts are physical objects and most prominent in the workplace itself. Historical company images in the lobby speak to tradition, while an open work area with no private offices sends a signal that collaboration is valued more than hierarchy. 

Culture is how you attract and retain talent by respecting their needs, supporting their dreams and sharing their values. When employees feel as though they fit in, they're naturally more likely to be happy, satisfied and productive at work. 

5 Ways to build a better brand and workplace culture

1. Offer a Palette of Place, Posture and Presence

Workplace wellbeing is a bottom-line issue. In today's business world, it's more important than ever to create a holistic culture that prioritizes the physical, cognitive and emotional wellbeing of its employees. 

A workplace that offers a palette of place, posture and presence can help boost wellbeing. When employees have more choices, they have a sense of control that helps them feel more empowered, engaged and less stressed. 

To foster wellbeing, employees need an ecosystem of spaces to choose the right kind of setting for the work they need to do. They can choose where and how they want to work, based on the environment they need to be most successful. 

People also need a balance between sitting, standing and walking every day. They should have access to solutions that encourage all-day movement, like sit-stand desks or office seating that encourages active sitting

On top of that, employees need a variety of mixed-presence experiences in workplace destinations to augment interaction. That way, they can collaborate effectively, whether in-person or remotely, without compromising their wellbeing. 

Design Considerations 

  • Offer a variety of settings to help employees feel supported in their work
  • Provide easy-to-adjust furniture to fit a range of sizes, needs and preferences to promote all-day movement
  • Design for physical and emotional comfort through a variety of posture options, including lounge or standing height
  • Create owned and shared spaces that make use of vertical surfaces, so people can make work visible, connect with remote team members via videoconferencing or work alone 
  • Position key work areas close to windows and install glass partitions to increase the amount of natural light within your office

2. Create Spaces that cultivate a collaborative culture

A great company culture results in a collaborative environment where employees can come together to solve problems and generate new ideas in ways that are truly creative and inspiring. 

Topics: Brand & Culture
4 min read

How to Encourage Employee Engagement through Workplace Design in 2021

By Brett Baltz on Feb 4, 2021 8:15:00 AM

Employee engagement is a serious bottom-line issue. According to the Steelcase Global Report, only 13 percent of global workers are highly engaged and highly satisfied with their work experience. 

When employees are disengaged, companies lose money, projects slow down, resources are drained and company goals are undermined, which is exactly why employee engagement is one of the key issues facing global organizations today. 

At Egyptian Workspace Partners, we know engagement is a complex issue that requires time and money. Still, we believe it's important to pinpoint exactly why  your people are disengaged and think of new ways to engage them through workplace design. 

In this article, we'll show how to create a great employee experience with these five design tips, so you can help boost employee engagement and productivity within your organization. 

4 Ways to Encourage Employee Engagement in the workplace

1. Give People Control over where and how they work  

Engaged employees have more control over their experience at work. But still, 51 percent of people say they need an escape from working in the same place during the day, and 53 percent can’t find the right types of spaces they need at any given time.

The fact is, people need the freedom to work wherever they want. They need access to a broad ecosystem of spaces with different tools and atmospheres to meet their changing needs throughout the day.  

Highly engaged employees have greater flexibility to make choices about where and how they work. They can move around the office easily, change postures and choose where they want to work based on the work they need to do. 

In fact, the Steelcase Global Report found that as the amount of choice and control increased, employee engagement also went up, resulting in 88 percent of workers being more highly engaged and highly satisfied than before.  

Design Considerations

  • Offer a variety of settings, both in and out of the office, to help employees feel supported in their work
  • Install a room scheduling system like Steelcase Room Wizard or Crestron Room Scheduling so users can easily book space to collaborate or focus
  • Create separate zones for individual, team and organizational needs
Topics: Engagement & Productivity