Office First Impressions Last – Buy Second Hand Furniture

Office First Impressions Last – Buy Second Hand Furniture

Everybody likes to work in a pleasant, warm environment. However people prefer to have a job over having an expensive office desk. What is sometimes seen as necessary expenditure for a start-up company is one of the causes of the culture that kills it.

Take two companies:

boo.com – expensive furniture, expensive chairs, expensive offices. People who came to work for boo experienced an immediately seemingly successful business. They could take it easy as clearly everything was looking good. They already had the best of the best, enjoyed expensive perks and ended up believing their own hype and overspend speculatively. They were too ambitious, trying to launch in multiple counties at once. The company spent $135 million of venture capital in just 18 months, and it was placed into receivership on 18 May 2000. It has been hailed as the biggest dot.com bust of all time.

eBay – cheap furniture, cheap desks, cheap office, people sharing desks, and everybody responsible for making their own desk. This was also the case when they appointed a new CEO. Founded by a hero of mine Pierre Omidyar, the staff became a team and the team grew together. Even though they ended up having money coming in so fast they didn’t have time to cash it up and bank it all, they never grew complacent with the early trappings of success before the success was sustainable. They went for substance over image, encouraging everyone to spend the money as if it was their own. Easier to do when they were working in humble surroundings. In 2010 it generated $9.1bn in revenue.

There are numerous other reasons why the companies failed or succeeded (and clearly I’m being over simplistic), but as with many organisations its amazing how much is established both positively and negatively through the culture of the leaders and the early team.

Make your decision now, which do you want – a good desk life or a good life?