Matt: Cool. Hi, I’m Matt.
Chris: Hi, I’m Chris. And welcome to another Monkey Monday.
Matt: Monkey Monday. And no blackboard today.
Matt: No. Why is that, Chris?
Chris: Well, we’re just gonna have a look at our office and show you how we’ve thought about things. We’ve been to a lot of other businesses, and seen a lot of places where people work, and we’ve tried to take away from the good places things to bring back here.
Matt: Yeah, so one thing we’re really keen on when we talk to people is focusing about touchpoints and branding. So making people understand that brand is everything. It’s not just how you communicate with your customers, it’s also the promise you make to your team, to yourselves, and everything. So what we’re really doing today is looking at a very unique touchpoint I suppose, which is, ‘What is it like to work inside our company?’ So we’re kind of opening the doors, and sharing the experience of how we’ve really focused on that touchpoint to try and create a place that’s really great to work in.
Chris: Yeah, people spend a lot of time here, so we’ve gotta try and make it the best it can be, really.
Matt: Yeah, and this is something that we again work with customers on to have them have a focus on what they believe, and trying to get them adopt that across the whole team. So starting with yourselves is a good place to begin your branding journey.
Matt: So we’ve spent some time - and we were in a tiny little office before here, and when we moved into this space we really wanted to create something that represented us as a team. We wanted things to be clean and minimal, but at the same time we just wanted a really good place to work. So we spent time making sure that we built a beautiful big kitchen. There’s a lot of foodies in our company, so we wanted to make sure they’d got a place, you know, to cook a great healthy meal for lunchtime, so we’re not all just living off sandwiches and crisps.
Chris: Hmm, and yeah, they need a space, a communal space where people can spend some time, eating that food, and just having some downtime, where you’ll come up with ideas. So if everyone’s always sat at their desks, then you’re not going to come up with too many creative ideas, and the best ideas come from when people from different areas start chatting together. So to allow that to happen is really important.
Matt: I mean almost half of the space we have here is dedicated to that kind of communal activity, and the other half is our office space, which is again really spread out, really open. Again we wanted to make sure that we could have a really good private space for meetings as well, and focusing on giving people little breakout areas so there’s lots of different breakout areas. We’ve got an arcade machine.
Chris: Which Matt built. Did you build it?
Matt: Me and Tom built it, yes. It’s still in bits. But it still works, as demonstrated here.
Matt: Yeah we did, again a lovely little project that me and Tom worked on together, just something that was fun and nerdy for us to play with. Again, it’s a good team-building thing.
Chris: Yeah, it’s really important to try and do some things that aren’t just standard work, work, work. It really helps build a team. And we’re not talking about going somewhere and building bridges in forests and stuff - it doesn’t have to be like that. It can just be tiny little simple things that take half an hour here or there.
Matt: And one of the big additions we’ve just made as well is building our own photography studio, which is something that we’re really proud of. I can’t believe how much I love our photography studio. I never knew I wanted one until we got one built.
Chris: Yeah, fair enough. Yeah, it’s really good.
Matt: It’s great. And we are an office full of photographers as well, so you know, the team have been using that towards the end of the week, just to practice their photography skills and practice their art, which again is a really valuable thing we’re giving to those enthusiasts in the team.
Chris: Yeah, and what about the normal space where people work, like the computer areas? How have we made that better?
Matt: So again we like to ask our team if they’re happy with stuff, so you know, are they happy with the temperature? Every office suffers from temperature wars, so there’s a slightly warmer part of the office for people that wanna be there. We make sure that the desks are in good order, the chairs are in good order, and we just pay attention to the small detail to give everyone the safest, best experience that we can.
Chris: Yep. We can’t expect people to look at the tiny details in websites and web development if we don’t do the same in our local environment.
Matt: Yeah, so making sure everyone’s got great equipment, a great environment, and everything they need to do their job is really important. And improves happiness. Everybody seems pretty happy. At least, they pretend they are to me.
Chris: Ah, yeah, that’s good.
Matt: That’s it, so we’re not suggesting you all need to run out and do what we do, but what you can do is start looking at that. We turn up to some customers’ places of work and they just haven’t looked at these little touchpoints, you know. Rusty railings outside, or their signage has got bits broken off it, everybody’s office suffers from the same, you know, blue carpet and beige walls. You don’t have to spend a fortune and changing that environment can have a really good, positive impact on both your own mental health and the health of your team.
Chris: Yep. It’s especially really tricky if you’ve gone into a business that’s been around for many years. You’re in a legacy building that you can’t really do much about, but maybe there are some things you can do. We’re really lucky that we outgrew our last place and we had a sort of clean slate to do here. But maybe there is something you can do.
Matt: Yep, so have a look, see what other little touchpoints you can improve and it will hopefully make your business happier and more successful.
Chris: Cool. See you next week.