The Orgatec was the place to be for the office furniture professional at the end of October. Larger than ever, the trade fair in Cologne showed that she, as a grand old lady in our industry, is still relevant. On the one hand, like every trade fair, it is the place where you catch up with acquaintances, meet with your regular suppliers and have a day out with your colleagues, but on the other hand, it is the place where you can take a look into the future. The theme of this Orgatec was Culture @ Work, where the fair raised the question of how our ‘working culture’ will look like in the coming years. OfficeRepublic wandered through the immense halls for a day or three and we came back with a number of observations that we share in a number of messages. Today part 1 – The self-adjusting chair
In our eyes the big central theme is ‘task-oriented work’. If you take as a starting point that every employee carries out several different tasks during the day and you want as a manufacturer to facilitate these tasks as well as possible then you can derive from that that every task has its own ‘ideal’ design. Concentration work requires facilities other than meetings, and informal meeting other than a ‘formal’meeting room. Nothing new, of course, but I think it is safe to say that almost every exhibitor has made his choices from these starting point.
If you imagine an employee, who is at different times at different workplaces in one office, then several manufacturers have come to the conclusion, in my view, that an office chair that needs to be adjusted each time by the individual user is doomed to fail. If office chairs are no longer personal, they will not always be set up correctly again and again by employees in general. And certainly not five times a day and five days a week. This Orgatec several leading manufacturers presented therefore the self-adjusting chair
Self Adjusting chairs at the Orgatec 2018
Interstuhl, Herman Miller, Sedus, Steelcase and Haworth
Interstuhl had a prominent place on the Orgatec for the introduction of the Pure, the first in the photo series above. The Pure is the top chair in the current product portfolio of the Germans. Haworth also had a self-adjustable chair in the foreground. The Nia was at the entrance to the booth and could not be missed when entering the Haworth domain. Herman Miller and Steelcase were less prominent at this Orgatec, or even completely absent, but had submitted their new Cosm and Silq for the Orgatecs innovation award. After all, Sedus had so many novelties that their se: flex was only one of their more than 12 product innovations.
Flexchair here to stay
With five prominent manufacturers who presented this type of chairs (let’s call it flex chairs) for the flex environment, we can assume that the other manufacturers will follow in the coming years with chairs designed specifically for the flex desk.