Offices are not just buildings for people to work in, and that even rings true in the sports industry where employees are often on-the-go meeting with clients or soliciting new customers.
When sports-related employees are within the confines of typical work-space, they should feel inspired, relaxed and creative in a vibrant environment that coincides with their industry. The result should be an uptick in production, happiness and quality of life for employees and executives.
With all of that in mind, lifestyle brand OGIO International, Inc. is opening its newest headquarters in Utah, which is design-inspired, fitness-focused and eco-friendly. OGIO is in the sports and lifestyle bag and apparel business, and has placed an emphasis on fitness, which will be implemented in its office opening next week.
The new space is nearly double the size of OGIO's previous headquarters. Importantly, the design truly accentuates the company's sports-inspired culture and seeks to further spark OGIO's creative juices.
"Our vision was to create an atmosphere that accentuates our design vibe and creative brand culture while infusing architectural and furnishing designs that reflects our adrenaline inspired sports DNA," explains CEO Tony Palma. "We designed a loft for a 'chill zone' to hang out, brainstorm and be creative for times that do not warrant a formal sit down meeting environment. The office was designed to encourage interactivity and not departmental segmentation. Our previous office had too many dividers and walls. Our new office is welcoming and encouraging of face-to-face communication vs. a culture of emails and indirect communication."
Tearing down the walls is tough for an early entrepreneur to do, which is why it took some time for Palma and his team to create a more conducive atmosphere for OGIO's operations. The expansion and shift in office focus comes after five years of impressive growth for OGIO and twenty-seven years of existence.
However, you can look at what OGIO is doing now and seek to mimic it in early stages of development.
"For us, we realize that an office is not just a 'building for people to work within,'" adds Palma. "People spend 8-10 hours a day at their place of work. We wanted our new office to reflect our brand ethos every day so that our people are inspired and want to come to OGIO to be creative and not to 'punch a time card.' We also wanted our new office to provide for open and less formal interactivity beyond scheduled meetings. Our people are our single largest reason for OGIO's success. We wanted an office and location that is conducive to the active lifestyle of our people. We also wanted an environment that allowed us to recruit talented people to and continue to spark the passion of all of our current team all in the spirit of 'winning the day' everyday."
A focus on fitness makes sense for most sports-related companies, as does utilization of attitudes toward 'winning.' Additionally, since many sports activities are conducted outdoors, it is natural to incorporate eco-friendliness into a sports company's mission and office environment.
You can learn from OGIO's focus on the above in crafting their sports-related companies.
"We designed an open air environment with ultra high ceilings to remind all of us to think big and not to be hindered by parameters or walls. We also wanted to make sure that our new headquarters included an on-site gym for our people to use at their convenience before, during or after work hours," says Palma. "While we are focused on driving our business, we are also focused on leaving our environment in a better place than we inherited. Plastic water bottles, reams of paper, wall to wall carpeting are not found in our new office. The desks that we designed are from reclaimed materials. And, we designed bike racks and showers to encourage our employees to ride their bikes to work. We will continue to challenge ourselves to find ways to leave our brand mark on this world without leaving negatively impacting environmental marks."