Cafe Culture in the modern workplace

Published / 13/07/2015

For all of those that were at the Workplace Continuity Seminar on 10th June, Bishopsgate, London and witnessed Steve Henigan’s presentation, you may recall his interesting Dr Who time journey. Starting from his University days where he had two key environments to learn in, (the classroom and the library), to seeing an increase in the use of more coffee shops, open spaces and informal collaboration spaces over the last number of years. Our university days are all time and deadline driven, similar to our working lives.

This brings us on to the remarkable rise of Cafe Culture and the cultural shift within the workplace, bringing with it the stunning success of the high street coffee shop. Replacing the former home to the impromptu working lunch, the Great British public house, has gone into seemingly terminal decline.

Until recently it was a predominantly London-only phenomenon, but now high streets across Britain are seeing shops from chemists to stationers, butchers to bookshops, transformed into buzzing local cafes, and bistros. An increase in hot desking and reduced space is causing this rise in using other public spaces. Coffee shops are still achieving a growth rate several times that of the wider British economy.

It is not uncommon to now arrange a business meeting or informal catch up in a coffee shop as an informal collaboration space. It’s a new way of pitching products, services and having a relaxed business meeting. Many modern businesses looking to enhance their workplace spaces use the ethos that the Cafe Culture produces.