This week Helsingin Sanomat, the major Finnish newspaper wrote an article about our fun and cool office. We are super proud to have our office, also known as Sievonia, acknowledged as one of the most fun offices in Helsinki. It is. You should come and check it out. A first time visitor usually notices the visual elements of our office, but there is more to it than pool tables and furry mascots.
Our office reflects how we view work: Work is not a battle where either the employee or the employer loses. Let me explain why the cool interior design choices of Sievonia are win-win solutions for both us who work here and for Sievo’s business.
People at Sievo need to come up with new ideas and solutions every day. Of course, our office needs to be functional and suitable for work, but there is nothing about our work that would require a serious or boring office. In fact, it is one of the functionalities of our physical setting to boost creativity and inspire new ideas.
Doing pull-ups or standing and moving during their work days is fun, but it also improves physical well-being, which results both in better performance at work and reduces the amount of sick leaves.
And if riding a bike or running to work enables parents of small children to fit sports into their busy schedules, then we need to have a shower and a bike storage so that they can do that. Enabling people to arrange their schedules as conveniently as possible reduces their stress levels, which is great for both personal life and work – a stressed out brain does not make the best and most innovative decisions.
Enabling informal interactions (like playing pool or having a chat at the coffee machine) helps us to know our colleagues better, which in turn makes it easier for us to work together. And of course, the sense of ownership and pride we feel about our office strengthens our community.
When designing our office, its different spaces and functions, we have tried to realize as many wishes from Sievonians as possible, because different aspects of the office are important to different people. Everybody at Sievo does not play pool or cook, but it’s great that the opportunity is there for those who want them.
I have heard people comparing fun offices to kindergartens – well our point exactly! Who says that you need to stop having fun and just be miserably serious after childhood? Or that you cannot have a credible business while still having fun? At Sievo, we don’t think that we need to give up play in order to become responsible adults. And talking about kindergarten, we also view our career paths as a playground instead of the usual one-way-ladder.
So in short, an office can have a positive effect on things like:
- Physical wellbeing
- Work-life balance
- Stress reduction
- Interpersonal relationships
- Sense of community
And all this without a significant extra cost. To us, having a fun and cool office has played out to be a great choice! And what’s more important, Sievonians love working here.