Squaredot FX Interview Article


Squaredot interviewed by FX magazine to discuss office identities, the influences of Covid, advancing technologies and more…

It was a pleasure for Squaredot directors and co-founders David Kramer and Kris Krokosz to feature in FX Magazines October 2023 issue.

For the last 20 years FX magazine has been essential reading for the contract interior design industry, providing in-depth reporting on the designers, specifiers, end users and issues that matter most. Produced by a team of dedicated journalists and experts, they interview some of the most influential, innovative and interesting design professionals in our field.

The interview was an excellent opportunity for the pair to look back on the 23 years that have passed since launching Squaredot, and reflects on the huge changes and developments that have occurred since 1984.

Jumping straight in, FX were keen to discuss how Covid has affected office design for clients, architects and designers, as well as discussing some of the seismic changes from pre-Covid times to now. Both David and Kris agree that Covid should have been one of the most radical and influential events on the office, and that it certainly shook things up for those who thought they could predict the future. They discuss how the “one size fits all” approach was never appropriate, and that analysis of individual requirements is vital now more than ever when it comes to office design. They note that some good has come from the pandemic due to this shift away from banks of workstations, desk numbers and space allocations, yet a better understanding as a whole of influences and alternative solutions is needed, something Squaredot has been working on long before Covid entered our lives.

Reflecting on past “radical thinking” within the industry, FX broached the topic of Niels Torp, and his vision of a new office landscape from 30 years ago at British Airways Waterside. Designed to promote social interaction and informal meetings, a 175 metre street was built, alongside quieter, calm office areas, bringing together 2,500 employees from 14 original locations. It was also designed to further reflect BA’s “citizen of the world” corporate identity, and different global themes are offered along the central street. The building ushered in a new era of work practice for BA, and enabled an active work environment for people to gravitate towards to collaborate and socialise. While hindsight may have lead David and Kris to approach this project slightly differently, it’s clear to see its links to business culture, personality of brand and tone of voice reflected through staff behaviours.

Among other topics, FX also enquired about some of the biggest design challenges and opportunities that have emerged in recent years, in which the subject of advancing technology couldn’t be ignored. From how the freedom to work anywhere thanks to the likes of MS Teams and Zoom has affected furniture manufacturers, to how losing Wi-Fi for even just 20 minutes now equates to a loss of sense of purpose, the role of technology in the workplace is ever evolving, and as such is an ever important discussion.

As you can see, from office identities, the radical influences of Covid, the challenges (and opportunities) that come with ever-advancing technologies, and the designs that have influenced and inspired Squaredot, it’s all covered. Click the link below to read the full interview in FX Magazine, and continue the discussion over on our Linkedin pages.

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