According to the Small Business Administration (SBA), 33.2 million small businesses are present in the US, accounting for about 99.9% of all companies in the country in 2022. If you’re one of these startups, you know that as your business grows, you will eventually need to move out of your home office and into a commercial space. This can be daunting, especially if you’ve never done it before.
But don’t worry; this article is here to help. If you’re like most new business owners, you’ll be building your first office from scratch. Here are some best practices to keep in mind as you design and create your new space.
1. Location is key.
You want to ensure you’re in a convenient location for both you and your employees. Think about things like commute times, parking, public transportation, and walkability when choosing a spot for your office. These may not seem very important at first, but they can make a big difference in employee satisfaction and retention down the line.
You also want to ensure you’re in a good location for business. If you’re in an industry that relies on foot traffic, you’ll want to be in a busy area with a lot of foot traffic. If your business is more focused on online sales, you might want to consider a location with lower rent.
You should also consider the type of environment you want to create for your team. Do you want a downtown loft full of character or a more traditional suburban office space? No matter what type of environment you’re going for, be sure to choose a location that will support it.
2. Keep future growth in mind.
It’s essential to pick an office space that can accommodate future growth. You don’t want to have to move again in six months because you’ve outgrown your current area. Make sure to leave some wiggle room by choosing an office that’s a little larger than what you need. That way, you won’t have to worry about packing up and moving again anytime soon.
You can do this by renting a space that’s a little larger than what you need or by choosing a location that has room for expansion. For example, if you’re renting an office in a city high-rise, choose one with multiple floors available so you can expand into other units as needed.
You should also create a floor plan that works for you now but can be easily adapted as your team grows. For example, if you have a small group of 10 people, you might want to set up a traditional office layout with individual offices and cubicles. But if you’re planning on growing to 20 or 30 people, you might want to consider an open floor plan that will give you more flexibility down the line.
3. Invest in an excellent first impression.
When designing your office, it’s easy to get caught up in the big-picture stuff like paint colors and furniture layout. But don’t forget about the more minor details that can make a big difference in the overall feel of your space.
For example, the way you greet visitors when they come to your office can set the tone for the rest of their visit. If you have a reception area, ensure it’s clean, welcoming, and professional. You can achieve this by hiring concierge security services that will handle things like greeting visitors and handling packages.
When choosing the right concierge staff, make sure to look for one with a good reputation and a track record of providing excellent customer service. This is especially important if you’re in a high-traffic area where you’ll be dealing with a lot of foot traffic.
First impressions are everything, so you want to ensure your office makes the best possible impression on everyone who comes through its doors.
4. Create a space that reflects your company’s values.
Your office should be a reflection of your company’s values and culture. If you value collaboration and communication, make sure those things are reflected in your design. If creativity is essential to you, consider adding some unique elements to your space. And if you want your office to have a more traditional feel, make sure it exudes professionalism in its design.
You should also pay attention to the music playing in the common areas. Choose mellow and low-key music if you want your office to have a more relaxed feel. But if you prefer a more upbeat atmosphere, opt for something with a little more energy.
Your office should be an extension of your company’s brand, so make sure it reflects your values and culture in its design.
5. Hire an experienced contractor.
This is probably the most important tip on this list. Don’t try to tackle this project on your own—hire an experienced contractor who can help you bring your vision to life. A good contractor can help you navigate the design process, stay within budget, and avoid any unforeseen problems along the way.
For example, if you’re unsure how to design a functional and aesthetically pleasing space, a contractor can help you develop a plan that meets all of your needs. And if you’re worried about going over budget, a contractor can help you find ways to save money without sacrificing quality.
They’ll also be able to handle all the permitting and construction logistics, so you can focus on running your business.
Building your first office is a big undertaking, but following these best practices will help ensure that it’s a success. From choosing the right location to hiring an experienced contractor, these tips will help make building your first office as smooth and stress-free as possible.