When you think of the corporate world, your mind probably conjures dull images of monotonously arranged cubicles occupied by immaculately dressed men and women. It’s not a terribly inspiring picture, so it’s no secret why a lot of companies attempt to defy this tedious trend by injecting some creativity into their office spaces. In fact, some organizations have gone above and beyond to put together a vibrant, imaginative environment for their employees. Here are a few examples of companies that have bypassed the traditional cubicles-and-office-rooms model in favor of trying out a radically different workplace layout.
Given that many of you discovered this blog through a Google search, there is little point in providing a detailed introduction to this multi-billion-dollar company—who hasn’t heard of it? As an employer, Google is far from the typical nine-to-five company, and their unconventionality extends to their office design preferences. The company’s newly opened Washington D.C. offices, for example, feature a variety of eye-catching attractions. Among these is the 9th level lobby floor, on which is printed a huge Google Maps reproduction of the nation’s capital, complete with one of those helpful little red pins indicating the location of the building. In addition, the site features video games, several dining areas, and even areas where employees can take naps. Google’s other locations around the globe sometimes have their own unique features, such as a playground-style slide that workers use to descend quickly from one floor to another.
Based in California, Autodesk is a successful software company responsible for the famed AutoCAD application that we so often use to create our drafting files. Autodesk is known far and wide as a highly creative company whose products have aided in the production of many prominent Hollywood films, including Avatar, Inception, and Iron Man 2. The company isn’t shy about showing off its accomplishments or the skills of its employees. Visitors to its San Francisco offices can view various exhibits dedicated to the creative efforts of the company’s staff, as well as many products made with Autodesk software. In the past, the company’s treasures on display have included a large model of a creature that was used during the filming of Avatar. As a visually striking workplace, Autodesk is tough to beat.
Like it or not, few companies exemplify contemporary times as well as Facebook. Sometimes it seems as if there are two kinds of people in the world: those who have current Facebook accounts, and those who will be returning to the site any day now. It should come as no surprise to see that Facebook’s cutting-edge philosophy extends to its workplace designs. The company—which maintains its headquarters in Menlo Park, CA, with support offices in various cities—provides its employees with a range of amenities, including a large eating area with free food, ping pong tables, a video game room, vivid interior artwork, and a “Facebook Wall” on which employees are encouraged to scribble whatever comes to mind.
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