Welcome back to Collective Bookmarks. This week’s newsletter is 1,394 words and a 4 minute read.

This week we’re bringing you our usual mix of stories and insights from the worlds of work and place. Over the next few months we’re going to have a lot of awesome announcements and we can’t wait to share more.

We were very excited to host our first Collective Table event in LA two weeks ago. We want to thank Steelcase and Tangram for co-sponsoring the event and our inaugural group of friends that joined us. The Table is an opportunity for us to break bread with our friends from other functions and develop better relationships with each-other. We are excited to bring the Collective Table to many more of you soon.

In This Week’s Issue:

As always if you have feedback, want to sponsor, support, or partner with Collective you can reach out at the link below. Let’s dive in.

Three Things You Should Know

From The World of Work and Place

1.How SoftBank’s Portfolio is Working

Once a quarter SoftBank’s Vision Fund puts out some interesting interactive data in their Sōzō Pulse report. There’s a lot of fantastic information related to the sentiment within their portfolio companies from Q4, but we zeroed in on this bit that was shared recently. Looking at the below see if you can guess which work model each color indicates? Answer below! Additionally they showed that the majority (around 75%) of the CEOs surveyed felt that hybrid work had a negative impact on culture. They did not provide a definition for what culture meant on the report page.

What We Think: In the above image the light tan color is hybrid. With hybrid and remote (dark brown) taking such significant roles the other piece of executive sentiment that culture has gotten worse is vitally important. First, as workplace leaders we can help to define what is meant by culture. Do we mean the sum of all actions taken at the company and how we operate based on our values? Or do we mean something else? It’s up to us as advisors to our executives to understand the problem space, and show how we can take action on these issues to address issues related to hybrid. We should be taking action now as hybrid seems to be here to stay.

2. The Open Office Debate Has Some New Considerations

In the latest issue of Scientific American they take a look at the history of the open office and all of the studies that have sough to understand it’s benefits or pitfalls. The article also highlights what we can learn from the deaf and neurodivergent communities to improve design for all. The author also speaks with a number of groups about the difficulty of balancing all of this in a single office system. It is full of interesting facts and studies so make sure you have time time to dive deep into it, and all it’s sub links!

What We Think: The pandemic opened a door to enable companies to hire more people with disabilities than ever, and that’s awesome. However, as companies adopt hybrid schedules it’s vital that we not only fix the problems of old open office designs, but we also consider all the new groups we’ve added to our companies. If you now have deaf, neurodivergent, or another group that you should be factoring into how your workplace operates – there’s never been a better time to start asking them what they need. Inclusive design isn’t a cure all and it will still take time to find the right solutions when co-designing with your teams.

3. The Government Has A Recruiting Problem

In a recent study the Defense Business Board (DBB) has cited that the US Defense Department has an insufficient strategy for recruiting civilian employees, with little effort made to market itself as an attractive employer. The board argues that this puts the department at a disadvantage compared to the private sector, particularly in mission-critical areas. The board suggests that DoD should develop a specialized cadre of recruiters and focus on building talent pipelines similar to those in the private sector. It also recommended improving DoD’s “employer brand” to communicate the Defense mission and a wider range of positions available throughout the civilian workforce. Interestingly, the report points out that the Department of Defense employs 15000 recruiters for the armed forces vs just 100 for the civilian side of the fence.

What We Think: The idea of a recruiting team being under resourced is probably not THAT surprising to anyone who has worked in recruiting at a startup. However, the government would likely qualify as an enterprise level organization. We wanted to share this report because it highlights that the issues affecting workplace recruitment and retention are not sequestered to one sector or another. They are similar problems affecting all industries. The idea of the US Government competing on brand is interesting and we hope that they’ll solve the problem of getting great talent to work on worthwhile problems.

One Big Thing

““The planning that we do is always like the light from the stars,” he says. “We are seeing the past.” And hoping that we can avoid repeating its mistakes.” – Alonso Toledo

Someone You Should Know

In The World of Work And Place

Andreas Hoffbauer, Ph.D., is Founder and Director of Atelier Kultur, a people analytics studio based in Manhattan, NY. Atelier Kultur works with organizations to help their people speed up time to decision, increase decision effectiveness, and productively collaborate between teams – regardless of where their people are located. With over 15 years of experience in knowledge management, behavioral science, and organizational design, Andreas works with a broad range of clients, from high-tech to humanitarian organizations.

In His Own Words: I have always been fascinated with understanding how startups and established organizations can transform seemingly immutable typologies and experiences. That curiosity inspired my academic research into some of the most innovative and disruptive organizations in the life sciences, engineering, design, and consumer products and services. The thread that ties them all together: they all have highly capable organizational networks that enabled new ideas and emerging insights to flow into them and then rapidly spread through them – overturning established assumptions and expectations along the way.

In 2019 I started Atelier Kultur with the conviction that organizational networks are more than pipes that connect people. They are also the filters that determine what ideas and behaviors reach us and how we interpret them. Having witnessed firsthand the power of intentionally designed organizational networks, my goal has been to help as many people as possible see their networks as an enabling force that they can shape to better achieve their personal and professional ambitions.

A Product We’re Into Right Now


About Café: As hybrid work isolates people, it’s harder than ever to feel connected to the company – that’s why Café boosts belonging across teams by encouraging in-person meetings. The platform is a Social Hub that empowers employees to connect through events, interests, and communities. You can book a space in the workplace, see who’s in the office, and plan gatherings with people that you care about.

What We Think: With the solidification of hybrid work and company culture being of vital importance (see studies in the link from item 1 and 2 this week) having an application that can enable social connection and cohesion for your team is important. Of course no application can do the full job of building culture for you. You’ll still need to do the hard work of coordinating time together and making the effort to build the culture you want day in and day out. Finding the right tools like Café to enable that can be a good first step though.

That’s It For This Week

We Appreciate You

As one of our over 200+ weekly readers we appreciate you being an early subscriber. We’ve reached over 5000 humans already and can’t wait to reach even more of you. Together, we believe we can enable teams at the intersection of work and place to move beyond conversation.

Until next time – Omar and Kayla