In episode 310 of Workplace Innovator, host Mike Petrusky speaks with Lohan Presencer, Executive Chairman of the Ministry of Sound Group in London, which operates an eponymous nightclub, a live events business, and The Ministry, a new paradigm in flexible working. They cover Presencer’s career journey in the music industry, the creation of The Ministry workspace, and his belief that workspaces should be places where employees can network, make friends, meet partners, make business contacts, and do business. Presencer also shares insights into what employees want from work.

Agenda 

  • Presencer’s journey through the music industry 
  • Inspiration behind The Ministry’s design and management 
  • Importance of creating a work environment that fosters community 

What you need to know: Workplace takeaways 

Takeaway 1: Concept of community for workspaces 

Workspaces should go beyond functionality to become places where employees can network, socialize, and even find personal partners. Environments should be designed with the employees’ overall experience in mind, and not just cater to their professional needs. 

“Community is not about great big neon signs on the wall saying, ‘We are a community.’ It is about creating an environment where people can mix and mingle,” explains Presencer.  

Programming is important, he says, and by hosting business and networking events, food and menu classes, and other activities, workspaces can provide opportunities for employees to interact and engage with each other in meaningful ways. 

Takeaway 2: Role of workspace amenities in employee experience 

A well-designed workspace should provide more than just a place to work — it should offer amenities that enhance the employee’s overall experience and contribute to their well-being. 

It starts early in the process. Presencer feels that workspaces should be designed from the start with the end-user in mind. “A workplace is somewhere, if you’ve been successful, it’s somewhere where your employees are going to be spending 50-60% of their waking lives. They’re going to be in that building. So, respect that.” 

He further explains: Part of that is providing amenities that go beyond superficial offerings like coffee machines and beer taps. Instead, proper investment should be made in providing amenities that truly enhance the employee experience, such as a well-equipped gym, event spaces, and food and drink options. 

Takeaway 3: Need for Hospitality Experts in Workspace Design 

Hospitality experts bring a unique perspective that can help create workspaces that truly cater to the needs of employees and foster a sense of community. 

“Think about what experience you want them to take away from that. Not just surface, but really engage. That is not a coffee machine or a beer tap. It’s proper investment with proper hospitality experts who understand how to bring people together and create experiences,” Presencer says. 

He urges decision-makers to look beyond cost and invest in creating workspaces that not only meet the functional needs of employees but also provide an enhanced experience that contributes to their overall well-being and satisfaction.  

And that requires the expertise of hospitality professionals who understand how to create such environments. 

Workplace management insights 

  • The Ministry, Borough is a vibrant, versatile space that fosters collaboration by catering to the needs of creative and tech industries, offering amenities like a deli, a bar, a gym, a podcast recording studio, and various meeting spaces. 
  • Companies can create environments where employees can thrive, improve their productivity, and be happy, which can lead to improved recruitment and retention. 
  • Corporate leaders must consider the needs and desires of their employees when designing workspaces, rather than basing decisions on their own experiences or cost considerations alone. 
  • The shift to remote work has highlighted the importance of physical workspaces for fostering connections and collaboration between employees. 

Listen to the full podcast here. 

Go deeper. Dive into more episodes of Eptura’s Workplace Innovator podcast. 

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Jonathan writes about asset management, maintenance software, and SaaS solutions in his role as a digital content creator at Eptura. He covers trends across industries, including fleet, manufacturing, healthcare, and hospitality, with a focus on delivering thought leadership with actionable insights. Earlier in his career, he wrote textbooks, edited NPC dialogue for video games, and taught English as a foreign language. He hold a master's degree in journalism.