1967 vs. 2014

In his latest blog post, The News Funnel Founder, Michael Beckerman, referenced a recent New York Times article that featured stories of college students who were using technology to enhance their college experience. These students were building web-based applications to help them get in to classes that were oversubscribed, apps that helped fellow students choose cool electives, and course catalogues that can be sorted and re-sorted with the click of a button.

Pretty impressive college students if you ask me. However, many of these students ran into problems when they needed information from their colleges or universities. For many institutions, it’s easier and safer simply to say “no” to certain request than to investigate the possible rewards of providing the information.

While Michael’s point was that if you aren’t embracing technology, you will be left behind and become obsolete, I see a correlation specific to corporate real estate.

In our industry, many companies are taking steps forward and designing space for the upcoming workforce. They are providing tools for the millennial workforce and encouraging collaboration and innovation.

However, there are still executives and companies that would rather simply say “no” than investigate the benefits of a modern workspace. Aside from being more efficient, more collaborative, and healthier, they are also a great marketing tool.

Do you think the students mentioned in the article above will choose to work for a company that puts them in a standard cubicle with the promise of one day getting a standard office? They would rather work for Google, DropBox or Clever (an educational start-up). 

There’s more competition than ever for the talented young minds coming out of college now that “start-up” is a viable option. If you really want to hire someone, why would you put them in a furniture system that was invented in 1967?