Thirdway explain why the word ‘of**ce’ is a ‘Dirty Word’ and why they’re on a mission to redefine it in 2023

Since its inception in 2009, award-winning commercial design and build company Thirdway, has been committed to changing the future of the workplace.

Passionate about change and about redefining the workplace to reflect this, Thirdway is committed to creating the future of the working environment. Their belief in this mission is to such an extent that they have trademarked the term “Redefining the O Word” – and from now on, until the Oxford and Cambridge Dictionary changes their definition, the word “office” will be a dirty word at Thirdway and will instead be referred to as of**ce.

In the wake of the pandemic the appearance of the workspace has changed dramatically, from neon-lit slogans, permeable room-dividers, 3D based technologies and ‘Zen rooms which cater for employees’ mental health. Ways of working have shifted, and a hybrid style of working can be seen flourishing across all sectors. When implemented well, these new practices of working, combined with intelligent workplace design can enhance a workforce’s creativity and productivity, and in turn, make people happier.

According to the Oxford Dictionary, an office is “a room, set of rooms or building where people work, usually sitting at desks”. Thirdway believes that this definition is outdated and that it should be redefined to something that is more fit for purpose.

Thirdway’s goal is to persuade the Oxford dictionary to change the definition of ‘Office’ to:

“A designed space where an organisation’s engagement, collaboration, culture and productivity are enhanced via its people, to achieve stated objectives and goals.”

This new definition fully embraces the new way of working that we are experiencing today and will see in the future. It’s a definition that doesn’t confine the way we work but instead empowers a workforce to be the best they can be.

One such example of a workspace is Thirdway’s recent Huckletree project which offers their co-working community a Moroccan inspired zen room, where members can take time out for their mental health or take part in a meditation session.

Thirdway strongly believes that the workspace is an essential tool for businesses to attract and retain high calibre employees in this shifting marketplace. Hybrid working is here to stay; although a desire for socialising is bringing employee’s back to the workplace (as is the cost-of-living crisis!).
And it seems the drive away from working from home is coming from younger employees. According to a recent survey from Emburse, a quarter of under 35s are considering going back into the workspace due to soaring energy prices. But demands have changed. The role of the workplace must now enhance our working lives, by offering better amenity provisions than what one might encounter working from home.

Thirdway’s conviction and commitment to creating the future of the workplace is the driver that underpins every single design they work on. They practice what they preach and continue to be forward thinking, adapting their own workspace accordingly. Through listening to what their people wanted, they created in their own working environment an engaging, purposeful, and invaluable space that is not only always in use but is flexible too. It encourages collaborative working, fantastic company culture, enhanced productivity and overall happier people creating a better standard of work than ever before. This way of working has always been a part of Thirdway life and since the pandemic of 2019, more and more people are following suit and doing the same. Therefore, the definition of “office” is no longer factually correct.

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