Customisation vs. Personalisation
Every one of us is different
While doing your grocery shopping have you ever looked for a canned drink with your name on it? Have you ever used configurators to design your own sports shoes or a car tailored to your needs? Adjusting products, otherwise produced on a mass scale, to individual customer’s needs is called ‘personalisation’. This is the latest trend that has affected the way of designing things, from cereal to cars.
As each of us is different and wants to manifest his/her individuality, more and more often we are looking for the things which are created just for us. Adjusting products to the needs and situations has become a real must. That trend has also been influencing the way contemporary office furniture is being designed and produced. Nowadays, thanks to psychology and neurosciences studying brain activities, we have become aware that people are not machines, but instead, they are truly complex individualities. They are not only different from one another physically, but they all perceive the reality in a variety of ways (extraverts vs. introverts), they also have different tempers, experience, and are of different ages.
It is an enormous challenge to design the office that will match the needs of those unalike generations: Millennials, who are just entering the market, Baby Boomers, who are still an active generation, as well as Generation X.
People and their needs
Why is it crucial to focus office design on employees and their needs? The answer is quite simple - in each company it is its people that matter. At present, managers are facing the greatest challenge of all, which is how to create a team and motivate it. Research shows that employee engagement depends on whether workers can actually have any impact on the way they work and on their workplace. So, this is why the personalisation of the office is so important. It simply gives each of us an opportunity to shape the surrounding the way we please and to adjust it to our own needs.
A contemporary office resembles a mosaic as it consists of completely different areas, for example, there are rooms to hold formal meetings (conference rooms), or to hold working meetings, there are also rest zones (canteen, patio), or quiet rooms there. The office is arranged in this way so that the employees could select and adjust their workplace to the task they need to perform. And that’s one of the levels of personalisation. The other level is to adjust your workplace to your own needs. It’s about setting the temperature or light intensity inside the room you are in, but it’s also about introducing small, yet significant, changes that will result in greater comfort at work and will increase work productivity.