Interior design trends are clearly showing that kitchens are becoming the new domestic hub. This trend is now spilling over to the work place and it’s easy to see why.
A well designed kitchen area, breakout space or canteen, provides a much needed break from screen time and allows employees to rest, recharge and socialise with colleagues. These areas are fast becoming the collaboration hubs of the office, where creative ideas are conceived and cross-department relationships are formed.
Kitchens and breakout areas provide employees with space for a no-obligation rest, chat or meeting. It’s an environment where ideas can be sparked, problems solved and morale boosted, all without any pressure. If these things happen in this space, it’s a bonus, but the space is primarily accepted and respected as a space that allows time away from work. However, it is often found that without the same pressures that are found in meeting rooms or behind desks, ideas and problem solving become much more creative, inclusive and frequent, even without a set intention or agenda.
What makes a great space?
The best functioning kitchen and breakout areas are equipped with modern appliances and conveniences such as coffee machines, microwaves and refrigerators which allow staff to bring in healthy meals from home and easily recharge their bodies while they rest their minds.
Furniture is also hugely important to the functionality and enjoyment of these spaces. Comfortable lounge areas with sofas and soft seating are important for those who want to sit down and recharge. Ergonomic chairs and tables are ideal for staff who wish to work away from their desk in a less formal environment. Large tables and comfortable seating provide a space for groups to gather and chat or collaborate, whilst smaller tables and high quality canteen chairs are great for those who simply want to sit and eat.
Acoustic pods and booths can be invaluable in this type of environment as it means those who prefer a little more quiet can still enjoy the culture and opportunity that these spaces provide, without having to completely isolate themselves from the experience.
Kitchen and breakout areas are no longer seen as small conveniences, but more as areas that capture and create a positive company culture that should be accessible for all. So, with that in mind, it might be time to start planning a refurb!
Here’s a great case study for a kitchen area that we completed for a global Sat Comms company to give you some inspiration.