4D Printing and a New Wave of Office Technology

Technology advancement never ceases to amaze business professionals when it comes to everyday practical use.  Remember the days where office equipment technology was at its infancy?  As the 21st century surges forward we as the workforce are becoming more reluctant to work in an environment where office equipment doesn’t provide a competitive edge. Office equipment has driven innovation in communications, working styles and even in the value placed on certain skill sets.  Geography is no longer a barrier to doing business, nor are business travelers cut off from communications infrastructure that support their work.  It is difficult to predict the office and landscape of the 21st century. Trends point to smarter and faster technology that will be capable of carrying out more complex functions with minimal human input.

4d-printing

Additive manufacturing (3D printing) is itself an emerging technology and has in fact been around for over 30 years! It is continuously being reported that 3D printing is now becoming more mainstream, but is still very heavily underutilized in the business world, considering its potential.  The potential to economically and time efficiently 3D print ANYTHING is an irresistible proposition. 3D printed materials is not the end of the story though, there are techniques to create materials/objects which can be pre-programmed to operate in a certain way.  Pretty amazing technology, what if I told you there is technology being worked on that would make 3D printing a thing of the past?

4D printing may be bursting onto the scene and leaving people in absolute awe.  Think of 4D printing as the same as 3D printing with the addition of time. By adding time to 3D printing the concept of 4D printing is born. This enables objects to be pre-programmed in various ways to react to a range of different stimuli.

4D printing is futuristic and a very exciting future at that. 4D printing delivers the possibility of designing ANY transformable shape, which can be made from a large selection of materials. These different materials will have many different properties and a range of potential applications and uses. There is a real opportunity for the creation of dynamic self-assembling objects which could transform and be used in a wide range of industries and in a large number of applications.

Research has cited examples such as the water systems of office buildings reshaping itself to efficiently allow water to be processed with minimal cost.  That very same office building can house a company that develop 4D sportswear/sports equipment that adapts its shape to its user and how they are performing when their body temperature of environment changes around them.  The possibilities seem endless. As time goes on 4D printing may just end up being available at your finger tips literally.  The cup you drink from, the desk you use for your work station to office building production.

4D Printing will play a key role in future production.  Making this happen on a human scale, is much more challenging, particularly in more traditional industries, such as building construction.  There is potential,in using self-assembling materials in disaster areas or extreme environments where conventional construction is not feasible or too expensive however. We might one day experience a future of adaptive infrastructure. In extreme cases we can apply this technology to  geographic locations that are notorious for producing earthquakes.  Just imagine where technology has come from.  If we can help save lives based on a concept that originated over 30 years ago.  Maybe one day constructing a building from 4D printing will be the norm.  Now that is technology.

Using the Olympics to Create Team Spirit

As the 2016 Olympic games are underway in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, viewers around the world will be tuning in to watch their favorite teams compete for pinnacle prize of gold.  It might just strike you to know that around an estimated 3.6 billion people will be glued to the Television rooting their teams on, that includes the 72% of business professionals.

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Summer tends to see a decline in productivity, with more workers taking off during the prime months of July and August than other months throughout the year.  Throw the spectacle of the Olympic Games into the mix and–let’s just say there’s plenty to distract a workforce this season.

So rather than reprimand employees, employers can set a new standard by encouraging employees to celebrate the games and creating opportunities to foster strong culture within the office.  Capturing the joy and celebration that comes along with the Olympic games there are ways to welcome the Olympic spirit into your workplace and boost employee engagement.

Host in-office olympic viewing parties. By soliciting employee input on the events streamed in office, you not only show them that you care about their opinions, but also create windows of opportunities for team bonding. Employees may uncover common sports interests with their colleagues.  They may even carry those shared interest forward even after the Olympics end further cementing team bonding within the office.

Companies can also host healthy competitions amongst the co-workers and generate teamwork with a focus on building relationships with one another, workers can simply inspire each other to achieve goals together, then translate that same focus and collaboration into their daily work routine.  One may even suggest starting a company sports team, there is no better opportune time to start a company sports team.  Distribute surveys to your employees on what sports they enjoy playing the most, and what days of the week they’d enjoy participating on a team.

By encouraging team sports you help employees get the routine exercise they need – which in turn has been proven to decrease stress, increase productivity and reduce employee absenteeism.  It also produces an environment where they feel supported leading to a more success company.  These Olympic games only take place every so often, why not embrace these rare moments and celebrate the opportunity to bring strength and unity to the workplace.

When To Take A Break At Work

Many of us are spending more and more of our workdays sitting in front of a desk managing tasks virtually.

In fact, the recently coined phrase “actively sedentary” refers to a new category of office workers who attempt to compensate for sitting 8-10 hrs a day by engaging in at least 60 minutes of daily exercise. While the effort is valiant, recent studies have shown that this amount of exercise is not nearly enough to offset the negative effects caused from sitting all day. Is there anything else that we, as the “actively sedentary” workforce, can do to make up for the long periods of time we remain stationary at our desks? Believe it or not, the answer may be as simple as taking more breaks.

Taking mid-day breaks is something most of us do of course. The questions is whether we are taking enough of them. Many recent studies have shown that for every hour that someone sits in a chair typing away, or immersing themselves in product software, or whatever their job might entail, they should be getting 5-10 minutes of activity (walking, stretching etc). That means in an average 8-hour workday we should be getting anywhere from 40 to 80 minutes of activity.

Now of course some bosses are more lenient then others when it comes to allowing employees out for a quick walk around the block every hour. However if you manage your time well throughout the day and exhibit proper “break etiquette”, most everyone can achieve this goal and stay healthy even while sitting all day.

In order to develop a proper daily break routine at the office, you must first and foremost know when to NOT take breaks. For me this falls under three categories: When you’re “in the zone”, when it’s inappropriate to do so, and when you are under immediate time constraints. The first category deals with breaking your concentration. We all have periods of time during the day when we are more productive then others. If you find yourself “in the zone”, working quickly and efficient and knocking off you’re daily to-dos rapid-fire, don’t stop what you are doing to get up, stretch and go out to grab a coffee for you and a colleague just because it’s break time. This can completely disrupt your concentration and inhibit those productive moments. Remember, we are trying to convince the boss that short, semi-frequent breaks actually enhance overall productivity, not hinder it.

It’s also prudent to refrain from taking breaks when it would be inappropriate to do so. For example, if you just got back from lunch 5 minutes ago, or your boss asks you to do something for him or her right away, it’s probably not the best time to go out for some fresh air. Similarly, if there is a task that requires your immediate attention, or if there is an approaching deadline for that day, it can be inappropriate to take breaks.

The key is to develop an adaptable routine where you are regularly getting up to stretch or get some air, or to go for a quick walk, without it affecting your productivity and without causing too much fanfare in the office. 5-minute breaks are great for not attracting too much attention and give you enough time to stretch your legs, use the restroom, get some water etc. The 10 and especially 15-minute breaks should often be reserved for later in the day, where even the bosses start becoming a little jaded. It may be likely that you’ll go less noticed from, say 4:00-4:15pm then you will from 9:45-10:00am. Therefore, pick your times wisely and do your best to get a minimum of 40 minutes of activity every day.

The Briefcase Replacement: A Low Down

These days fashion is synonymous with office culture. Does your getup match your furnished office?

Maybe you need to take a harder look. Sick of throwing on that backpack every morning? Perhaps you wish you had something more sophisticated to tote on the subway on the way to work. With the evolution of technology comes the evolution of fashion. At Turnkey Office Space we’ve synthesized a list of the best designed bags that look great in any environment but especially thrive in the office. Check ‘em out!

Tubo Rayado Duffle by Mafia (Starts at $99) Mafia is Paz and Marcos Mafia, a brother and sister team from Argentina. Marcos is a kitesurfer and Paz was a banker, the two merged their passions for sustainable product design and watersports to create Mafia, a company that produces a variety of bags made from recycled sails. Mafia works with Argentina and San Francisco-based NGOs to sew and produce the bags. They’re in the midst of their Kickstarter campaign to raise money to expand their San Francisco production shop. Our favorite is the Tubo Rayado Duffle, not only does it have a special, secure space for your laptop but its size allows it to double as a weekend and travel bag.

Waxed-Canvas Weekender by L.L.Bean. ($179) This is the perfect bag for both flying and regular ground commuting. It’s timeless beige and tan color palette with leather trim gives the owner a glow of sophistication and business credibility. There’s an option to add monogramming, but we don’t recommend that because its look is so unique that it’s difficult for anybody to forget that it belongs to you.

WWII Bags by Temple ($250-650) Does your office need a history lesson? Maybe your executive suite needs more of a ‘general officer’ feel? These duffel bags from Temple will give your workspace that regal presence its been lacking. Each bag is uniquely made from authentic World War II field wool blankets, bags and camp packs. Although the price is a little steep, knowing that your bag has survived an epic 6 year battle is pretty much worth it.

Ultra Light Cargo Duffel by Brics ($200). Teddy Minford, an editor at Fodors tested this light and breathable duffel and said, “The size was great for packing the necessities and still being able to navigate crowded subways and trains, and I actually felt quite fashionable with it.” This bag will brighten up your desk or workstation, and it also fits great in overhead bins on airplanes.

Is Telecommuting Good?

Working from home. A dream for some people, a time management nightmare for others.

It takes a kind of resilience and penchant for solitude to work from home. It can require a great deal of self-motivation, strong emailing skills, and of course a steady internet connection. Avoiding traffic, or the bus or train can be a virtue, yet the freedom to brainstorm and socialize with your coworkers without a screen is a difficult benefit to match.

The concept of telecommuting is relatively new. In the early 1970s, Jack Niles, a rocket scientist for NASA first coined the term when a colleague asked, “If you can put a man on the moon how come you can’t do something about traffic?” Niles’ first foray into telecommuting was with an insurance company in 1973. Since the personal computer still hadn’t come into existence yet, Niles worked from one of the satellite offices the company had set up.

The statistics of people who opt for the home desk rather than the office suite are rather surprising. According the think tank, Global Work Place Analytics, the average commuter is breaching middle aged, has a college degree, works for a company with 100 or more employees, and earns around $58,0000 a year. They estimate that about 50% of the U.S.’s full-time work force holds a position that allows for flexible at-home work.

The environmental benefits of telecommuting are unprecedented. Global Work Place Analytics says that if all U.S. full-time workers spent half the week working from home, their business would save $11,000 per person per year, workers would save between $2,000 and $7,000 a year, and “greenhouse gas reduction would be the equivalent of taking the entire New York State workforce permanently off the road.”

However, it’s difficult to replicate the kind of creativity and productivity that an office produces by working at home alone. “I love being in an office and bouncing ideas off of my coworkers. Working in-house promotes a stronger sense of camaraderie within my team.” Says Alfred, who has been working for a San Francisco-based start up the last three years. Without the physical presence of an employee, it’s difficult to determine the caliber of their work, is the most common argument against telecommuting.

Matt Mullenweg, the CEO of Automattic, a company which permits more than half of its employees totelecommute has a different theory. “It’s easier to slack off in that office than if you’re working remotely. If you come into an office and are well-dressed and on time, you assume people are working because they look busy. At home, all you have is your output — did you commit the code, did you write the post, did you make the proposal? There’s no theater of physical proximity.”

On A Mission For The Best Money Exchange App

Smartphone-Apps

Last weekend, Nicola went camping in the Berkshires with a group of ten of her friends.

Someone bought groceries, a couple others drove, and another one paid for the campsite. Instead of engaging in an awkward conversation about who-owes-who-what, writing checks, and making ATM stops, Nicola’s friends “charged” her and the others whatever amounts they owed through a money transfer app called Venmo.

It’s programs like Venmo, PayPal, Square Cash, and Google Wallet that have quickly become the norm for casual payments. Instead of asking a friend to “spot you”, we’re now whipping out our phones and opening up a virtual wallet app. In 2013, there were $235 billion of transactions made through online payment systems. Gartner technology analysts estimate that there will be $720 billion of transactions through money sharing programs by 2017.

With news of the iPhone 6 featuring the Apple Wallet, an app that is partnering with Visa, Mastercard, and American Express to allow its user to make retail purchases with just the stroke of a finger, we at Turnkey Office Space have decided to evaluate our favorite money exchanging apps.

PayPal. For being the oldest payment service on the block, PayPal certainly spends a lot of time on the sidelines. Probably because the program is mostly associated with business transactions and its 2.9% +$0.30 fee it charges its pay-ers. As of late, the company has been stepping up its retail game. Over the last several months, PayPal has been partnering with eateries and small business and offering their customers discounts on their products if they pay using the app. It’s also the only service of the 4 available for Windows Phone.

Square Cash. This is the only money-exchanging app that requires only the pay-er to have an account. Square Cash and Venmo are the only programs that don’t have a service fee for debit card payments.

Google Wallet. Perhaps the most fickle of the four, Google Wallet is attached to your Gmail address and requires answering several security questions. Wallet lets you pay with credit card, which Square and Venmo don’t, but it charges 2.9% for every debit or credit card transaction.

Venmo. A Twitter-esque social media feed and check cashing center is how Venmo defines itself. When signing up, the service gives you the option to link up your Facebook profile and add “friends”. You also have the option to make your transactions public or for “friends only”, so others can check out and “like” your transactions.

Big Pharma Leaves New Jersey and Vacant Office Space Awaits Impatiently

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The pharmaceutical industry used to be a dominating force in New Jersey commerce.

However, over the last twenty years times have certainly changed. Today we see the offices these international, billion dollar pharmaceutical producers now sitting vacant. There are a few factors responsible for big pharma’s disappearance from New Jersey. The billowing tech industry is partially responsible for the evaporation of old school biotech. Companies choosing to cut costs and outsource to India and Asia is another reason. Yet, figuring out what to do with these vast, empty New Jersey office campuses is another predicament.

New Jersey is in search of a new nickname. “The Nation’s Medicine Chest” was the former home to several pharmaceutical companies including Novo Nordisk and Roche. Several pharma companies have merged, downsized, and relocated. In 2009, New York-based Pfizer bought Wisconsin-based Wyeth. Merck reduced its workforce by 15% when it purchased Schering-Plough formerly based in Summit, New Jersey. Many displaced workers have been forced to change careers. Kim Haas, a former drug designer for Wyeth and Sanofi called the transition “a bloodbath” when the drug giant abandoned its Malven, PA campus (located on the Jersey border) in 2010.

According to James W. Hughes, dean of the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers University, the dissipation of New Jersey’s pharmaceutical industry is due to the fact that biotech is attempting to reformat its environment to be more academically reflective. They’re moving their campuses to places like the Bay Area, Cambridge, and Manhattan where science technology is thriving in nearby universities.

So, the question remains – – what’s to become of these massive, deserted buildings? In December, Roche, the Swiss mega drug manufacturer and creator of Valium, shut down its 2 million square foot campus in Nutley, NJ. When Genentech acquired Roche in 2009 it moved to San Francisco and gradually decreased its New Jersey presence.

“Our mission for Roche is to sell the entire site at one time. So, while we have a lot of various interest in portions of the site, those that are looking at the site to purchase as a single entity are large, financially capable, integrated, multidisciplinary development-type companies.” Said Thomas Stanton, managing director of JLL, the real estate firm marketing Roche’s campus for NorthJersey.com. Stanton has toured the property to over 35 prospective buyers, but hasn’t received any bids. In the meantime, JLL is leasing a couple of the 13 buildings to small businesses. The space is perfect for biotech start-ups that need minimal lab space, but unfortunately due to financial reasons, JLL must hold out for a big spender.

Everybody Needs To Move To Oklahoma City And Start A Business

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Minimal income tax. Low-cost of living. The two things that every fresh-faced entrepreneur wants to hear.

Furnished, business ready office suites at cheap and reasonable rates? Sounds too good to be true! Not in Oklahoma City! To say business is booming in Oklahoma City would be a drastic understatement. Status reports that there are more than 100 new small startups cropping up every month in The Cinderella City. With only 4.4% unemployment, ranked as number 4 on Forbes’ “Manufacturing Boomtown” list, listed as no.1 for economic strength in The Business Journal’s list, and no.1 in CNN’s book of “Most Business-Friendly Cities”, what is stopping anyone from moving to Oklahoma City? According to CEO of the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce, Roy Williams, people are drawn to OKC for a variety of strongreasons. “It’s relatively easy to start up a business here. The revelatory environment, the access to capitol and the technical assistance. Small business development assistance – those type of infrastructure capacity and resource are here.” He says.

Oklahoma City is rich with culture – after you’ve landed in Will Rogers Airport, it may be difficult to believe you’re truly in The Midwest. Jazz and blues bars line downtown’s art-deco stylized streets. The Oklahoma City Museum of Art contains the most comprehensive collection of Dale Chihuly art work, including his 55-foot tall glass sculpture. From the deadCENTER Film Festival, to the abundance of American Indian organizations and shops (Oklahoma has 38 sovereign tribes), to the Bricktown Water Taxis, and across the way to Prosperity Junction, a 14,000 square foot replica of a 20th century cattle town – there is no shortage of fun and excitement in Oklahoma City.

Renting and owning real estate is a breeze in OKC. The city has some of the most affordable luxury apartments in the country. Executive suites start at $400 and many feature a variety of amenities – including but not limited to phone answering reception, office machines, internet, and cleaning services. Due to its low cost of living, Oklahoma City is also one of the country’s biggest hubs for recent graduates. For those who fear Oklahoma’s obesity rates, take a look at Mayor Mick Cornett’s “This City is Going on a Diet” project. In 2007, Cornett “challenged” the city to collectively lose 1,000,000 pounds. With nearly 50,000 participants and 8 years later, the city reached its goal. During the challenge, the city built new sidewalks and added 100 miles of bike trails to encourage citizens to be more physically active in their daily life.

Turnkey Office Space Comments on Recent San Francisco Commercial Office Space Report

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A report released earlier this month has found San Francisco office rents are projected to surpass New York City office rents in the near future.

Turnkey Office Space, a nationwide office space search service that specializes in commercial office space in major metropolitan areas, released a comment today following a new research report by CBRE, the world’s largest commercial real estate brokerage.

The report, published in Bloomberg titled “San Francisco Office Rents Seen Topping Manhattan in 2015” by Dan Levy (August 14, 2014), found that the average monthly rental charge for commercial office space on the West Coast, particularly in San Francisco, is expected to rise by the end of 2015. While San Francisco office rates are currently on average at $31.50 a square foot, they could rise as high as $69.71 a square foot by the end of next year, according to CBRE.

San Francisco has grown into a major technology hub, with currently under three-quarters of the rented commercial space occupied by technology firms and start-ups. If the rental rate increase occurs as projected, this would be the first time office space in a city on the West Coast has exceeded the cost of office space in New York City since the dot-com bubble in 2000.

According to the team at Turnkey Office Space, the commercial office space in San Francisco’s financial district is already on average pricier than downtown New York City. Nevertheless, the company has experienced increased interest in the San Francisco Bay area by current and potential clients.

The popularity of West Coast office space comes during a time when Manhattan office space construction is on pace to hit a 25 year high. Experts at Turnkey Office Space believe this could result in newly constructed office space for more affordable prices in New York City to compete with their West Coast counterpart.

For companies currently located in California, and specifically San Francisco, Jonathan Bachrach, Managing Director of Turnkey Office Space, believes the increased rental rates are driving some companies out of San Francisco. Many companies are currently searching for spaces a mere 11 miles westward in the city of Oakland, CA, where more affordable options are available.

“We, as a company, have noticed a marked increase in demand for office space in the Oakland area, where commercial office space rent is overall a cheaper investment for start-up companies,” said Bachrach. “As the city of San Francisco becomes home to the most expensive real estate in the country, we expect more small businesses to set-up shop in cities like Oakland and Berkeley. But, to be honest, I would not be surprised if we see those rental rates climb as well in the next year due to their proximity.”

About Turnkey Office Space: Turnkey Office Space is a countrywide search and consulting services for companies seeking office space. They specialize in office suites, virtual offices, and co-working spaces. Turnkey can be reached via their websitehttps://www.turnkeyofficespace.com and by phone at 1-888-282-8555.

The Best Apple Products Of All Time

Apple-Products

“Later this year, we’ve got the best product pipeline that I’ve seen in my 25 years at Apple.”

These words were said by Apple’s senior vice president, Eddy Cue just last month. Sitting in our office in New York City, the gang at Turnkey Office Space got to thinking – what are the best Apple products? The mega-corporation has produced so many with such speed and grandeur over the last quarter of century, it’s difficult to really consider what are an office’s most vital Apple devices and computers. Fortunately we were able to concoct a succinct yet comprehensive list of the most intuitive and intelligent Apple gadgets and contraptions.

1. Mac 128K. After an embarrassing failure with the Apple III, the Mac 128K had its promotional debut in a commercialduring the 1984 Superbowl. The sarcastically somber tagline “You’ll see why 1984 won’t be like ‘1984’” swayed thousands of consumers to rush to their local tech stores and drop a whopping $2,495 on this beige, boxy critter.

2. iMac. From 1998 to 2003 we graced our desks with these translucent gum drop-esque machines. They came in a variety of “flavors” – from Bondi Blue to Tangerine to Flower Power. Today the iMac has a totally different reputation than it did 10 years ago. The 6th generation iMac features a 5mm thick edge and full lamination, a process that minimizes the gap between the LCD panel and the glass, thus eliminating reflection from the screen. The latest iMac is 97% more energy efficient than the original version, and uses just .9 watt of electricity in sleep mode.

3. iPad Air. iPads have a great, natural command for business activities. The set of preinstalled apps streamline projects, presentations, and data in a way that many computers can’t. Keynote allows you to easily create beautiful and inventive presentations, Pages helps you generate powerful and illustrative reports, and Numbers lets you track and compile data by using tables and graphs. We chose the iPad Air over the traditional iPad because of its improved design and new front facing camera which features face detection and backside illumination.

4. iPhone. It would be weird if we didn’t include the iPhone on this list! The all-in-one phone, computer, organizer, GPS, camera etc… is an office’s no.1 lifeline. We made it number 4 because the monthly bill is a bit of a drag, but all of its resources make it a must-have.