What is “The 3rd Work Place” Anyway?

Everybody’s raving about the 3rd place and the future of work, but does anyone really know what the 3rd place is?

We’ve had a go at, errr, mmm, explaining it.

The 3rd Place can be describes as all the in-between type spaces which were, until now unusable as workspace. It could be a train station, a public space, an urban park, a roof terrace, a coffee shop, a tube ride, or….a coworking space.

How has this happened? Well, with quantum technology  leaps, the finding of information is, by itself no longer adding value. What we see as “value” has changed instead to conversation and creativity and knowledge workers now have a true infrastructure where they can thrive whilst enjoying autonomy and independence as well as an expectation of social interaction in the work place.

As technology enables, workspace design and our physical environment has responded. Buildings no longer need large comms rooms, cabling or even central phone systems. Main stream offices are evolving and becoming “porous”. Porous office space is becoming social space.

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The order of the day is now natural light, coffee in all the right locations, design space that fosters of serendipity and choice of seating and desk types. Property developers and architects are also realising that openness is a best seller and that workers love light,air & space.

Building finishes have become natural and bare and open with exposed concrete, visible ducting and minimal partitioning and segregation. Chop outs within larger buildings provide double height ceilings which giving s sense of height and place. Ground floor amenities (cafes, bars, coffee shops) which foster interaction are now a deliberate focus. Spaces are better planned and offices in themselves have been able to develop a personality.

Employers embrace the concept realising that their space offering must respond to changes in order to retain good talent and allow their staff to work in different ways. The home and the office have blended. What will be the next iteration of the workplace?

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