OpenView Office Remodeling Lesson #2: Leverage the Resources You Already Have
The second post in this three-part series (Part I here) looks at leveraging the resources you already have to get the most out of your office remodeling project.
Erin (right) and myself chat in the newly remodeled kitchen at Expansion Lab.
When Erin McDonald started working at OpenView, she was surprised by one of the first questions OpenView’s founder Scott Maxwell asked her:
What are you passionate about?
After answering “design,” Erin soon found herself tasked with choosing new lighting fixtures for the Labs office. And with that, OpenView’s remodel projects were underway with Erin at the helm.
When was the last time you asked your coworkers and employees what they were passionate about? What they went to school for? What they spend their free time doing?
Imagine if Scott hadn’t taken the time to ask, and more importantly act on, the answers to those simple questions. We might not have known that we already had the design talent and knowledge to manage our remodel in-house!
It’s crucial for anyone managing a remodel (or any project for that matter) to gain a thorough understanding of the resources that are already at their disposal.
Here are the two main resources that Erin tapped into for help during the remodel:
It’s often said that a good manager knows what they don’t know. While managing the remodel of OpenView’s Labs, Expansion Lab, and Investment spaces, Erin found that leveraging employees was the first and most valuable tool for providing insight into anything that was unclear to her. Her initial approach was asking her coworkers questions: What are your needs? What do you want from the space? What are your complaints? In doing so, she quickly learned that someone had a contact in the lighting industry and would be happy to put her in touch as a starting point.
You won’t know the sort of network and knowledge you have around you unless you ask. Who and what your own coworkers and employees know might surprise you, so don’t be afraid to leverage them!
Your lighting vendor probably has a preferred electrician and building management likely has a painter they already use. The vendors you’re already working with will gladly put you in touch with experts in the industry.
Once Erin was in touch with the experts she needed, she asked as many questions as she could, “even if they sounded really stupid.” The first thing to remember is this: experts usually love talking about what they’re experts in. Even if you decide not to work with a particular vendor, most will happily tell you what you should be considering and who else you should be talking to.
Have you gone through an office remodel? Who and what was particularly helpful during the process?
Lesson #3: Prioritize Easy Ways to Reduce Costs coming soon!
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