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6 Iconoclasts on the Future of Space and its Impact on People

Construction, design, and real estate leaders are accustomed to navigating the unknown. But today, there is a new kind of uncertainty few leaders have ever faced. In this series, we profile six big thinkers to better understand how designing and building space will change in the years ahead, and what that change means for people.

  • Betsy Vohs Founder, Studio BV

  • Rich Steimel Senior Vice President, Lendlease

    Old approaches to construction are waning while new building methods, like prefabrication, are on the rise. Making projects more cost effective, safer, and competitive all while delivering a higher-quality product...

  • Kristi Woolsey Associate Director + Lead, Smart Environments Group, BCG

    Employers need strategies to attract talent to their workplaces. For architect, designer, and consultant Kristi Woolsey, that means looking at behavioral strategy and combining digital tools and physical spaces to allow companies to thrive in the future of work...

  • Amy Marks Head of Industrialized Construction Strategy and Evangelism, Autodesk

    Amy Marks has a red high-heel shoe on display in her home office to make a point about the benefits of productization. It was custom-made, which Marks argues isn’t very efficient. Why buy a custom pair of heels when you can easily buy them off the shelf quicker and probably pay less?...

  • Tim Kay Managing Director, Jones Lang LaSalle Inc.

    A massive shift in how office space gets used is underway. Tim Kay of Jones Lang LaSalle explains why adding flexibility and adaptability to these spaces is the way to embrace the demand for hybrid workplaces...

  • Michael Ford Vice President of Global Real Estate and Security, Microsoft

    When flexible spaces meet technology in Microsoft’s workplaces, it unlocks creativity and productivity for employees, says Michael Ford...

To Enable Certainty, Embrace Adaptability

Relevant and useful space should be fluid, simple to adapt, cause minimal disruption to your people and business and change with circumstances.

Sounds simple but breaking away from conventional decision making and approaches to construction requires a brave commitment to working together within our industry, instead of remaining fiercely isolated and protecting our ideas.

The future as we see it, is about collective intelligence and collaborative momentum. The force of many driving the same vision. A community of committed rule breakers, ready to question the status quo and share insight with each other that benefits all of us.

That’s why we asked our network of big thinkers what they believe about the future of space and its impact on people. They talked to us about how the construction industry would be more efficient and sustainable if it embraced productization through prefab and modular design. They said adding technology to flexible, adaptable spaces can unlock creativity and productivity for employees. And, that the workplace is the foundation of a company’s culture and a valuable tool in attracting and retaining the right talent.

The needs and expectations of people and organizations will continue to dramatically change, placing new demands on spaces that render old models of design and building obsolete. By adopting new approaches to collaboration, construction and design, together, we can create spaces that can accommodate the future instead of trying to predict it.

Image Credit: James John Jetel

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