FKM Agency Headquarters
When FKM, a leading advertising agency in Houston, decided to relocate from their eighteen-year-old, mostly enclosed offices, they embarked on a plan to reduce office sizes by 35%, open them up and devote more space to collaboration. The company wanted to embrace a working model that reduced the hierarchy of positions and of offices. The design solution resulted in an open concept that places importance on equal access to daylight. Open workstations are located along the window wall while management offices, which have no doors, were zoned toward the building core.
Through the programming process, the design team developed three office standards. A furniture mockup review process afforded all user groups an opportunity to test out the new office standards and provide feedback to the design team. Enhancements and adjustments to furniture specifications were incorporated, and more importantly, this process promoted a spirit of inclusivity whereby all stakeholders was made to feel part of the process. The new office space encourages the creative team to work across silos. Individual spaces are exchanged for neighborhood meeting zones. These teaming areas are located throughout the floors with access to collaboration devices such as markerboards, tack boards and television monitors.
The “Great Room” was conceived to be multifunctional: to accommodate the whole staff for monthly office-wide functions; to serve as a central break room / play area; to hold small team meetings; or to bring in a laptop for quiet work while enjoying a cup of coffee. This is an active space purposefully placed to be visible from the elevators connecting three departments and a common production area. This space is interspersed with a few meeting/ teaming places along with smaller ‘war rooms.’ The open space and tables are networked for laptops, cable TV, or gaming consoles for a break during an all-nighter or to resolve creative issues.
The new work environment inspired a new business model which generated excitement throughout the entire FKM team to recreate themselves as a brand. The design of the space speaks to the progressive culture of the firm as reflected in the new logo, website and marketing materials.