Shadowing Reveals Valuable Insights for the Design Process

In college, a professor once told me shadowing is the only way to understand your client’s process and discover how to improve their environment. To illustrate her point, she shared a story about when she had shadowed her mother in the kitchen. She wanted to learn how to make a pot roast. She watched as her mother pulled two small pans out of the cabinet, cut the roast in half and put each piece in a different pan to cook. My professor asked her why she split the meat instead of cooking the whole roast in her larger pan, which was still sitting in the cabinet. Her mother’s response was, “Well, I don’t really know. It’s the way my mom taught me, and it’s the way I’ve always done it.” As it tu

3 Smart Strategies for Incorporating Your Brand into Your Workspace

Competition for talent continues to increase in a number of fields. One way companies can differentiate themselves from others is by infusing their brand into their workspace. In addition to being a recruitment and retention tool, it can also help reinforce brand, keeping it top of mind for clients, customers, co-workers and new recruits. There are a number of ways to incorporate your business’s culture and identity into your workplace. Start by using colors and design principles similar to those found in your marketing materials. Integrating those elements into signage and art around the office is an easy way to begin. While those changes make an immediate impact, here are three smart strat

Add Square-Footage to Your Library by Rethinking Your Outdoor Space

Summer vacation is often a busy season for libraries. With concerts, movie nights and reading programs, they fill with members of the community. One way to add usable square-footage to your existing building is to rethink your outdoor spaces. A well-designed, library outdoor space provides an opportunity for larger gatherings, because you’re not constrained by the size of a meeting room. They can offer a number of options when designed for flexibility and comfort. To do this, we recommend that libraries begin by including these five elements in their plans. Incorporating seating into the landscape. This provides patrons with a place to read or socialize outside. Plan for electrical requireme

Community Engagement Event Shapes Library Design in Chillicothe, Missouri

Our guest experience approach to design often includes visioning, shadowing and surveying. But, hosting community engagement events is another foundational step we include for libraries. We recently held one in Chillicothe, Missouri. Traditionally, these events are used to inform the community about what to expect, but we prefer to engage them in dialogue to better understand their expectations and perceptions before presenting a completed plan. It’s a chance for us to identify issues and opportunities, learn about the history and heritage of the community and understand how the project will impact their neighborhoods. We do this by engaging the residents in conversation, listening to their

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