dried maple leaves

Welcome back to Collective Bookmarks. As we continue to move towards the fall season we hope to see an end to RTO headlines and summer heatwaves. Which one will die out first is yet to be seen. Collective is happy to continue to bring you the latest insights from the world of workplace.

This week’s newsletter is a 6 minute read, or the time it takes to find a lego in the dark after having punctured your foot on it. Collective Bookmarks is sponsored by HQO, the world’s leading workplace experience platform.

In This Week’s Issue:

Events You Should Attend:

Epoch’s Experience Mix and Mingle in San Francisco

Books We’re Reading: Out of Office by C. Warzel & H. Petersen

As always, if you have feedback or questions please reach out.


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Three Things You Should Know

From The World of Work and Place

1.The Hottest New Office is the Gym

As reported in the Wall Street Journal, gyms are evolving into co-working spaces, catering to the needs of remote workers who seek a blend of fitness and work. Jessica DiGiovanna, an audit project manager, exemplifies this trend by spending her workdays at a Life Time gym’s co-working space. She values the balance between self-care and professional tasks. While some large co-working companies face market challenges, gym owners are capitalizing on the demand for alternative work environments that are both social and convenient. Luxury health clubs are expanding their offerings to include co-working amenities, such as conference rooms with advanced tech and comfortable workspaces. However, some users face challenges, like finding a suitable backdrop for video calls amidst the gym’s bustling activity. The trend underscores a shift in work culture, with employees seeking flexible, hybrid solutions that merge work, wellness, and social interaction.

gym road signage leading to a workplace

What We Think: We would be interested to see if more niche co-working spaces like this pop up on the scene soon. For those who always enjoyed getting in a workout between meetings or having health focused amenities, this solution can make a lot of sense. If these spaces have good sound dampening and you can find a decent background for calls, why not give it a try? Just don’t take a zoom call from the squat rack please.

2. The Whole Building Life-Cycle Approach

In her first Collective Thoughts piece, Deniz Besiktepe discusses the built environment and how it plays a pivotal role in shaping society and individual well-being. Key stakeholders in this domain have historically influenced the design and function of these spaces. With the evolution of workplaces, including hybrid and remote settings, the definition of a “workplace” has expanded to include home offices, coffee shops, and libraries. The challenge lies in ensuring these spaces promote well-being and productivity, which requires a collective and holistic approach. Read on below for the rest of Deniz’s awesome first article.

gray concrete building covered trees representing the building life-cycle

3. Employees That Build Value vs Destroy It

In one of their latest studies McKinsey & Company takes a look at how the pandemic has reshaped the work landscape, leading to challenges for employers in assessing employee effectiveness, especially with the rise of hybrid and remote work models. McKinsey’s research indicates that employee disengagement and attrition could cost a median-sized S&P 500 company between $228 million and $355 million annually. To address this, companies need to recognize the diverse experiences of their workforce and adopt tailored strategies. The research identifies six employee archetypes, ranging from highly dissatisfied “quitters” to super-engaged “thriving stars.” To maximize productivity and well-being, companies should offer flexibility, ensure fair compensation, provide clear career paths, and foster a sense of purpose among employees. As remote and hybrid work models persist, the focus should shift to measuring performance based on outcomes rather than presence.

black smartphone near person in a meeting about human resources

What We Think: This latest research from McKinsey actually matches very well with Gallup’s state of workplace report from earlier this year. They advised that focusing a companies effort on those employees in the top 3 categories made the most sense. However, we were glad to see McKinsey going a step further and recommending a balanced purpose driven approach that also focuses on outcomes instead of physical presence. One other interesting tidbit was the number of employees who actually were working more than one job (5%). This number is extremely low when we consider just how much attention the trend of over-employement has received. Perhaps over-employement was over represented in media attention.

Together with
a woman holding a phone in her hand showing the application HQO

HqO, ranked No. 75 on the Inc. 5000 list, is transforming how people connect with each other and the places they work. The HqO Workplace Experience Platform and App makes it easy for companies and commercial property teams to create modern workplaces through world-class amenities and services that allow people to thrive and produce the best results. Active in over 250 million square feet in 25 countries, 57% of the Fortune 100 rely on HqO to enhance their workplace experiences, improve employee satisfaction, and drive operational excellence.

One Big Thing

$228 Million –  The estimated cost of employee disengagement and attrition for a median-size S&P 500 Company according to McKinsey & Company

Someone You Should Know

In the world of Work and Place

Dr. Deniz Besiktepe is a trained architect and currently an assistant professor at the Purdue University School of Construction Management Technology (SCMT). She holds a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering and Construction Engineering and Management from Colorado State University. She has 13 years of industry experience in construction and facilities management areas prior to joining academia. She is the recipient of the International Facility Management Association (IFMA) Foundation Academic Contributor of the Year Award 2022 and currently serves on the IFMA Foundation’s scholarship and fundraiser committees. Dr. Besiktepe’s FM research focuses on building maintenance, condition assessment, decision-making models, fuzzy applications, and implementing data-driven techniques in the FM area. In addition, she is currently teaching a graduate-level facilities management course at Purdue SCMT.

an image of deniz besiktepe

What’s Happening in The Collective Connect Community?

We’re very excited for our next live session that we’ll be hosting within the community at the end of September.  Denise Brouder of SwayWorkplace will be sharing insights on leading hybrid teams.  This is the work that Denise lives and breathes every day so we’re very happy she has agreed to come and both share information, but also answer the community’s burning questions about making hybrid work. To join the session you can apply to join the community below.

an image of Denise Brouder

A Product We’re Into


Expansive is a nationwide coworking and flexible office brand that began in Chicago in 2013 and has grown to 46 locations (4M SF) in over 35 cities across the US.  Expansive is unique in that we own the buildings we operate.  As a result, we not only offer a more stable business model but a wider range and variety of workspaces than other operators at a much lesser cost.  Therefore, companies can grow with us over time.  From on-demand workspace, dedicated team suites, on-site storage to corporate event space, Expansive creates workspace communities where people and companies thrive.

What We Think: Expansive is a great product for any workplace professional implementing a flexible work policy or supports a fully distributed workforce. Their offerings are unique in that they offer the traditional on-demand workspaces, but also offer event space and storage space in their marketplace. We like Expansive because they envisioning the use of real estate differently for end users and allowing more options for newer ways of working, possible.

That’s It For This Week

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