Space Three Two

Are you experiencing an Office Existential Crisis?

Jon Dweck
Jon Dweck
Are you experiencing an Office Existential Crisis?

Hybrid working. It’s here to stay. But not every business is embracing this changed working pattern and there’s resistance amongst some business leaders to recognise the benefits of hybrid working.

In an ADP survey of 32,000 workers in 17 countries, 64% said they preferred to work in a hybrid set up. And yet in a survey of CEOs conducted by KPMG last year, 63% are predicting a full time return to the office by 2026.

Our founder, Jon Dweck refers to a sense that many business leaders and teams are experiencing as an ‘Office Existential Crisis’ - a deep distressing introspection about the purpose of the office and its connection to the way we work. Have we completely missed the point of working together? And how do we fix the tension between employers and employees?

Well perhaps instead of trying to reverse back to old ways of working, or abandoning the office completely, it’s worth considering all the pros and cons of a modern office today. 

Cost v. benefits of office working

It’s easy to measure the cost of an office. But it is much harder to measure the benefit of an office. In simple terms though, the value that an office space can bring you and your team needs to exceed the cost of that office. 

There are some metrics you can apply to measure the value of an office or workspace.

The Power of Productivity 

Perhaps one of the most fundamental measures of a good or bad working environment is its impact on productivity. Research shows there are 5 key factors that undermine productivity. 

  • Poor leadership and communication

  • Unclear goals and objectives

  • Minimal teamwork and collaboration

  • Lack of work support or skills development

  • Poor time management 

Working remotely on a full time basis can exacerbate the effect of any of these negative behaviour culture trends. But perhaps one of the worst impacts of being a fully remote team is its effect  on employee mental health. 

Evidence shows that workers that never or rarely connect with colleagues on a face to face basis can cause significant stress. 

According to Gallup Research in 2023, remote work can blur the lines between work and normal life. And workers record feeling isolated and lonely, ending up working even longer hours.

Getting your office strategy wrong will severely impact the health of good business. It will undo all the productivity gains you were hoping to gain from having an office in the first place and undermine staff retention and recruitment. 

A workspace worth leaving home for

In Jon Dweck’s words, getting the balance right is key and having an office worth leaving home for is intrinsic. 

What are the 3 ingredients you need to consider for creating a workplace your team will love?


Having the best facilities - based on your team’s needs and what they value. Maybe this is a chill out or brainstorm space. Or showers. Perhaps it's about having the best kitchen facilities for cooking or communal eating space. It could simply be plenty of office snacks and great coffee. Let your team tell you!


How to create a great office vibe? Put into the hands of your team to curate and deliver. Let them lead on modelling the best environment.  From artwork to pet policies, music, plants, the whole look and feel. Creating a relaxed and happy workspace will create the best type of working culture and an amazing and productive workspace packed with positive vibes.


Perhaps the most overlooked aspect of a great workspace is people! You might have the best facilities and location but if there are 3 people in a 30 person office, there’s no appeal and your team will question the value of coming to the office.

At Space32, we think a successful strategy for today’s businesses is about connecting an office strategy with a working pattern strategy.

Working patterns

There are approximately 7 ways we are currently working:

  • Full time in the office 

  • Mainly in the office

  • Fixed office days

  • Minimum days expected

  • Employee choice

  • Remote First

  • Fully Remote

None of these commonly used approaches are without challenges!. And all options  require some kind of compromise. For example, full time office working will make it hard to attract staff. Office distractions are high, office overheads are high and so is the daily commute. 

However we know there are even more challenges with fully remote working. From a loss of culture and poor mental health to trust issues, onboarding and face to face training.

Could fixed hybrid working be the answer?

In the US, it's the fastest growing approach to working patterns - having risen from 25% to 35% usage over 6 months last year.

What does it mean? Set days working in the office and set days working remotely.  Our co-founder Jon has implemented fixed hybrid working across both his businesses and noticed how it sets a pattern to a week that seems to work for everyone.

“We prioritise tasks in the office that are better done collaboratively. For example on Mondays when we are all in the office, we focus on planning sessions, team meetings and 121s. That enables all of us to focus on our individual tasks for Tuesday and Wednesday. It then sets us up to think about how we can benefit from being back together on Thursday for collaborative sessions such as brainstorms, workshops, training and so on”.

This working pattern also means that people can build their lives effectively around work as they know exactly when they’re in the office and exactly when they are home”.

If your office is not being used all the time and you have space to share,  you may want to know what your office could be worth. Equally you may want to explore the model of sharing workspace within Hosted Offices - whether that’s full or part time. 

We can help you figure this all out!