NeoCon, the largest commercial interiors show in the U.S., took place at The Merchandise Mart in Chicago from June 15 to 17, showcasing thousands of new products in workplace, healthcare, hospitality, retail, education, public spaces and government from over 700 leading companies.
Jonathon Webb, vice president of business markets and global accounts at KI Furniture, explained to Illinois Real Estate Journal about the new trends in many retail business offices.
“The biggest trend that we are seeing in corporate real estate is this concept of promoting active design and a shift in sustainability to human sustainability,” Webb said.
He explained that in previous years, people attending the show would want to know if products are recyclable, but now, companies are seeing a huge shift in organizations that come to them interested in having a sustainable group of people that work for them.
“Attention and retention is a big deal for clients,” he said. “So how can they put together a work environment that puts together a sustainable environment for their employees and it all kind of centers around advancing clients with different work environments.”
KI, based in Green Bay, Wisconsin, is very application specific and do a lot of different work environments that allow clients to have any type of work styles, according to Webb.
“It’s all about providing active design and spaces that allow people to quickly move from one space to the next,” he added.
He also mentioned that KI is one of the only organizations using the concept of active design to help design spaces for clients.
Lack of division between spaces is another big trend.
“That’s one of the things we try to do in our show room,” he explained. “It’s important for products and solutions to be able to work together in a way that makes sense to both our clients and that’s what we really want to try to communicate with them.”