Creativity is already there: instructions for use.

Creativity is not a matter of being a genius, it is a matter of living in an environment and constantly adapting to it and at the same time modifying it.
So creativity can be fostered through space, enhancing well-being, flexibility and malleability of the furniture, accountability, communication and new technologies. That’s what WOW! has sustained at the conference “The boundaries of fantasy: is creativity in the office going too further?” at the  IFMA’s Facility Management Day 2017

Talking about creativity in an office environment is sometimes cause of anxiety. Workers feel like they have to do something extraordinary that they feel they can’t do, even if they don’t know exactly what and how. On the other hand, managers are struggling to create more and more innovative workplaces and ways of working, questioning, at the same time, their real effectiveness of them and trying to define where it is possible to draw boundaries.


There’s another way to think about creativity that helps to take the pressure off: creativity is already there, it is a part of our everyday life in every environment.
The American anthropologist Tim Ingold once said that “we don’t build to dwell, we dwell therefore we build”.
Creativity arises in a constant relationship within an environment that is made of space, objects, people and rules.
A set of rules is essential for creativity, which is our own way to move inside and bend their boundaries and to keep on recreating them, like kids playing a “what if” game.
Think about the workstation of a hierarchical old-style workplace: on each desk it’s owner create his own territory, piling up papers, adding photos or other kind of objects, positioning monitors or pens in different ways. This is what I call an “inner focused” creativity, and its aim is “survive the boring routine of each day”. The challenge is nowadays to make this “already-made” creativity visible, enhance it, and use it to improve the company’s productivity.


If we think about the Maslow pyramid of needs, we can turn outwardly this creativity, by creating a space capable of satisfying the well-being, sense of belonging, engagement, fulfilment and safety, basic needs of everyone.
How can we do that nowadays? Here we give five practical suggestions:


 1) A malleable and pliant space.
When it’s a matter of creativity, flexibility is not enough. We need a sensorial environment that people can touch, reassemble, and constantly modify and re-invent. A multifunctional space is essential, but it is not enough: it has to be open designed, thought not just for the today’s needs but capable of adapting to ten years ahead needs.

2) Objects are actions and relationships.
“Two empty chairs, one opposite to the other, are already a conversation”. Objects are both symbols of identity both a suggestion of an action. Through furniture, managers can transmit messages and influence the behaviour of the employees, creating a space suitable for the goal they want to reach, making it easily perceivable.


 3) Accountability and trust
Social facts, like office’s life, has always something that is unpredictable and often the project you have in mind comes out in a totally different result.
We need to accept this unpredictability, creating a working environment where two smart working keywords like accountability and trust are perceived and put into practice constantly.


4) Space as communication and learning.
As Birgit Gebhardt has studied, it is more effective to design space, not thinking about the material side of it, but like a stage where conversations, communications and actions take place. We need to shape communication if we want to foster new perspective and new ways of interaction, which are the foundation of a creative workplace. Moreover, we have to think about the office as a life-long learning environment, where people can exchange competences and knowledge, stimulating their personal growth.


5) The key role of technology.
As a recent Sedus’s research shows, technology is having a strong impact on architecture and design, developing the concept of a “spacial happiness” based on the capability of the individual to dominate the environment, deciding the lighting, heating, humidity, acoustic conditions. Technology is also crucial to control the unpredictability we talked about before: IoT and sensors help to collect a huge amount of data that managers can use to design more effective and more engaging workplace, satisfying the needs of each employee.
Text by Gabriele Masi.

02-FM Day- IFMA-wow-webmagazine


IFMA: Facility Management Day: the future of FM, now (Milan, October 28th).

At last, here is the most long-awaited meeting in the Building and Facility Management industry, organized by IFMA Italia.

The 16th edition of Facility Management Day will give the Italian Facility and Building Management sector the opportunity to analize the current scenario and the companies the guidelines to be successful in the few next years. The event is free for IFMA Italia members and people who buy/run properties and services.
At 4pm a conference about the today revolution of the workplace is attended with success case studies.
Italian language. Further information and agenda.
Title: Il futuro del FM, adesso. (IFMA Italia Facility Management Day)
Where: Palazzo delle Stelline, Corso Magenta, 61, Milan
When: October 28th, 2015, from 9,00 am to 6,30 pm.


Smart Working: new spaces for the new working models. 

A survey and a vivacious event promoted by Sedus and IFMA Italia have analysed how the new work styles change the concept of workplace and how the furniture functional to smart working will evolve. From the point of view of space management, the results show the need for more focus rooms, namely enclosed offices or private areas for concentrated working, precisely widespread inside the working environments.

Sedus chose a stimulating and innovatory formula to present the survey carried out together with IFMA Italia. At Teatro Parenti in Milan, a place full of atmosphere, last May 19th, the meeting “Smart Working: new spaces for the new working models” gathered  facility managers and planners, who could have a debate, subdivided into three workteams and in three different rooms, with the objective to get a clear idea of the key subjects in the space planning of a smart office:
to determine the strategically most important areas,
to define the planning criteria of the new working areas,
to establish which features should furniture have,
in order to meet the requirements of smart working and most of all of smart workers.
The final, informal conference allowed to share the results of the three workshops.

The Country Manager di Sedus Italia, Lorenzo Maresca’s  opening speech stressed Sedus philosophy, now a Foundation, that hasn’t just invested in products for 140 years, but it also aims at a “productive wellbeing”.  After being a pioneer in the field of ergonomic seating, Sedus  has taken on a more dynamic view emphasizing that to be seated is however bad for our health, we must move about and, for this reason, it shifted its attention to the complexity of the workplace.
By collaborating with qualified Boards like IFMA or Osservatorio Smart Working of Politecnico di Milano, Sedus tries to find new solutions, in the plural, for the only certainty is that  there cannot be an effective solution for everyone: each company, each smart worker has to find its “own” way.
The meeting went on with Maria Antonietta Lisena, who presented the results of the study.

An excellent case study closed the first public part of the event: Pietro Fiorani, National General Services Manager di Coca Cola HBC Italia, explained the smart working solutions adopted for the new Milan Headquarters designed by DEGW.
The new premises were designed by considering the office as a place where people meet to develop projects, a sort of  “Mac-Drive to recharge devices, get through a piece of experience, absorb energy for one’s work and develop one’s network, to acquire knowledge and combine an action as a team.

During the second part of the event, the people present were divided into three groups to discuss as many subjects.The three workshop where conducted by Alessandro Adamo (DEGW Italia), Stefano Anfossi (Studio Pierandrei e Associati) e Renata Sias (WOW! Webmagazine) helped by the “graphic Facilitator” of Associazione Punto Uno (Claudio Francescato, Sara Seravalle e Marielle Binken).

Wang Qingsong at Pavilion of China, 55th Biennale di Venezia.

The Workplace is changing Face: Ifma Seminar (October 16th, Milan).

IFMA Italia presents the Seminar “The Workplace is changing Face: evolution of the office/Il Workplace cambia volto” (October 16th) forestalling the 15th edition of the annual FM Day Convention which will be held on November 4th at Palazzo delle Stelline in Milan. WOW! is media partner.

The seminar “Il Workplace cambia volto: l’evoluzione e le nuove realtà dello spazio ufficio” aims to provide a comprehensive overview of the most current ways of working and management of the workplace and to introduce innovative models of habits adopted by most companies.
The Facility Manager is personally involved in this transformation of the style and workspace because he has the expertise and a deep knowledge of every part of the company, its workings , its present and future strategies.
During the seminar IFMA Italia will present tools and methodologies for the detection and analysis allowing the Facility Manager to have updated and accurate information on the times and ways in which people use spaces and services.
We also analyze how the evolution of style and the work environment can make: a better use of resources, a greater employee satisfaction, an increase in productivity and an cost optimization related to internal consumption company.

For further information, cost, registration click here.
Title Seminar: Il Workplace cambia volto: l’evoluzione e le nuove realtà dello spazio ufficio:
Where: IFMA Italia headquarters, Viale Lombardia 66, Milano.
When: October 16th (2/6 pm)

Workplace in a Wang Qingsong’s artwork  “Transfiguration” by Wang Qingsong (Padiglione della Repubblica Popolare Cinese alla 55° Esposizione Internazionale d’Arte Biennale di Venezia). Curator Wang Chunchen.
Frame of  video “
Evolution of the Desk” (Harvard Innovation Lab).
Mail.Ru Office in Moscow by Studio Briz.



Plantronics OFFICES lounge wow webmagazine

Smart Working: you can and you must! (October 15th, Milan).

On October 15th will be hold in Milan the conference for the presentation on the Research 2014 by  Osservatorio Smart Working promoted by School of Management of Politecnico di Milano. WOW! is media partner.

The presentation of the research by Mariano Corso (scientific director) e Fiorella Crespi (research manager) will be followed by a Round Table attended by the partner companies (among the speakers Lorenzo Maresca of Sedus and Philip Vanhoutte of Plantronics) and the Prize Giving Ceremony of the “Smart Working Awards” with a speech of Maria Antonietta Lisena of IFMA Italia.
Osservatorio Smart Working, through a study, that involves people in charge of information systems and human resources and facility managers of public and private companies, intends to monitor the growth and spread of Smart Working in Italy, with an in-depth study of the successful cases.
The Meeting will give us the opportunity to answer the following questions:
What is the companies’ level of maturity as regards Smart Working?
What steps are to be followed to create and effective model of Smart Working?
Are people ready for “Smart” working logics?
How can we support flexibility of hours and workplace?
Which technologies are qualifying for Smart Working? What is the role they play inside and outside the workplace?
How can we benefit from Smart Working? What are the hindrances to its introduction?
Further information: Ilaria Russi (ilaria.russi@polimi.it).
Title Conference: Smart Working: you can and you must!
Where: Politecnico di Milano, Campus Bovisa (aula Carlo De Carli) Via Durando 10, Milano.
When: October 15th (9 am/1,30 pm).



Smarter working by Plantronics.