The iconic board room table has been a hot topic of discussion with regards to meeting today’s conference room needs. The conversation has become an exciting exchange of fresh ideas. As meeting styles have evolved into more conversational, less formal occasions, the design challenge has focused on smaller more dynamic spaces.
The standard rectangular conference room table has been a fixture in corporate working life. They have become tricked out with connectivity and integrated features to enhance the digital conferencing experience. But there are indications that they just don’t perform well for the way we meet today.
MEETING THE CHALLENGE
If you are in the creative problem-solving business, brainstorming around the conference room table can have a significant impact on productivity, interaction, and idea generation. Traditional rectangular conference room tables with head chairs have become an impediment to open creative discussions. For those unlucky enough to be seated at the far ends, ideas don’t flow because it’s nearly impossible to make eye contact without craning your neck.
The frustrations and challenges with open dialog around a square table have created some amazing opportunities to rethink meeting spaces. You’ve probably noticed that board room style meetings often lead to factions breaking off into their own discussions up and down the table. This is an insight that has slowly altered the meeting dialog.
Out of this frustration has been born huddle spaces, casual furniture groupings and meetings outside of the office over coffee. These are the unstructured dynamics that have not only changed the way ideas are shared but the way office design itself has risen to the challenge. Relaxed meeting styles featuring smaller circular configurations, with or without tables, have opened the floor for more creative discussions to evolve at the moment inspiration strikes.
REINVENT YOUR MEETING STYLE
The goal of the open plan office has always been to put things on a level playing field. Removing the barriers of traditional office design, to open things up for collaboration and informal dialog. The traditional conference room does not quite fit this model. As a result, reception areas, breakrooms, and corner nooks have broken out of the boardroom space and stepped up to the challenge of a whole new way of meeting.
If you are ready to reinvent your meeting spaces, leasing office furniture would be a great option to transition your conference room into smaller more productive meeting zones. Think outside the box with demountable glass walls. Invest in mobile tables that can convert into different configurations and multitask as training rooms. Rethink the seating with upholstered pieces and bold color.
Breakroom areas have become flexible spaces that entice working away from the desk. They have come into their own as transitional spaces that house coffee bars, and feature the cafe aesthetic that can transform a casual client meeting into a relaxed exchange of ideas. So don’t worry about what to do with that rectangular conference table. Put it in the breakroom and reinvent it into a communal gathering table. Make a statement with it by putting a glass board surface on top of it for bold idea sharing.
Taking a fresh approach to how your office design contributes to the way you do business can lead to some unique solutions. Our team is great at coming up with modern adaptions and reinventing what you already have. It all starts with a conversation.