Style or Comfort: What really works in CRE?

March 30th, 2020NAI Global |  Original Article


CRE is the industry that shapes commercial businesses by developing the properties that house them. Because of this, CRE plays a huge role in creating spaces that truly work for their users. It’s all about optimization, strategizing, and coming up with creative solutions. 

This is especially true when looking at the contemporary office scene. The pressure is increasing for workspaces to be stylish, comfortable, productive, and all of the above. In 2020, the bar continues to rise and everyone working within CRE’s adapting office industry needs to be prepared.

The question on everyone’s mind is: what makes a great office? 

For the past 5 years, there’s been a continual back-and-forth between style and comfort in the office scene. Which one is more important? Which one establishes the best office space? What should we be going for in upcoming CRE office projects? 

Let’s dive into the issue and see which one prevails: style or comfort. 

Why Style Matters

Style is incredibly important in contemporary office developments. The industry demands sleek, stylish, and attractive spaces. Office tenants are shopping for spaces that can meet their aesthetic needs as well as their productivity demands. 

Stylish and well-designed office spaces are required to create highly sought after listings in 2020 and beyond. CRE pros should keep up with the latest office design trends and see how they can be integrated into their listings and developments. 

Office designs have changed so much in the past decade, which means you can’t get away with an old design setup. An older office design is immediately apparent to prospective tenants, creating a big red flag. Failing to stay current can create outdated office spaces that aren’t getting attention from prospective tenants. 

Comfort is Important, Too

However, that’s not to undermine the importance of comfort. 

Even if something looks good, it needs to function well, too. While you may be able to attract a great tenant with a fully-style based workspace, an office lacking in comfort surely won’t retain them. 

Ergonomic designs are key for successful workspace design. The office needs to work for the people who are working in it. If comfort and accessibility are not taken into account when the office is being designed, it results in an awkward, unusable, or faulty workspace. 

As much as style is important, comfort is too. It’s a key element in creating an amazing workspace. Comfortable team members are able to be more productive which helps them to get more done and meet their goals. 

Comfort is also necessary to upkeep a ‘healthy’ commercial property. Besides ergonomic designs, the office space should also provide all the necessities such as clean air, sunlight, and comfortable temperatures. This helps keep tenants healthy and focused on the tasks at hand. 

Finding the Perfect Medium 

As we can see, the best offices always result from a strong mix of both style and comfort. The space should have a cutting-edge appearance while also being a comfortable place for team members to get their work done.