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Quest WorkspacesAug 11, 2017 11:22:58 AM7 min read

A Tech Firm’s Guide to Choosing Downtown Miami Office Space

All tech firms need the same basic things, but the ones that want to outperform have a few special items on the agenda. Hear from insiders what the top tech firms are doing with their downtown Miami office space to set themselves up to beat the competition.

The Freedom to Work the Way You Want

There are certain aspects of office space freedom that most tech firms in downtown Miami office space will look for. The space has to be scalable, because these types of organizations tend to go from zero to fifty in three seconds flat. Likewise, in the case that venture funding gets yanked, you’d want the flexibility to know that you aren’t tied up in a ten year lease for three times as much space as you need. It is for this reason that coworking and temporary office space companies tend to be a favorite pick of tech firms. As their business grows and evolves they won’t have to move to a new facility – the coworking space can accommodate their need to upgrade (or downgrade) quickly and easily.

And speaking of freedom, it applies not only to the real estate but also the design of the office.

Says Bruce Wells, Director of Marketing and Design at Innovant:

For the past few years — starting on the West Coast — tech firms have challenged furniture and partition manufacturers to make their products extremely mobile and reconfigurable. Tech employees want to be able to reconfigure desks and workspaces on a moment’s notice to suit the ever changing makeup of their project teams.

Reconfigurable desks, such as those by Innovant, pictured here, are popular choices for tech firms in downtown Miami work space and across the world.

As tech firms tend to attract millennial talent, work-life balance is a must, and firms have to accommodate everything from employee desires to bike to the office or perform a midday workout to receive pet health insurance options.

And of course, the obvious: technical feasibility. Tech firms needs to be free to work wherever, whenever within their office space. The Internet going down is a death knell for them.

Most tech firms acknowledge these basic needs. But what about the ones who want not just to get by, but to dominate? Those firms have some special performance enhancing amenities in mind that their offices must cater to.

Stacking the Deck to Perform

In the uber-competitive world of technology entrepreneurship, you’ve got to perform to stay alive. What does performance come down to? First you’ve got to have an idea that is unique and meets a demand, fulfills a need, or solves a problem that many people have. Then you’ve to persuade your target buyers to pay for a solution. That’s the basic process; do it successfully and it’s winner, winner, chicken dinner, before you know it you’ve gone from a downtown Miami office space to being on the cover of Entrepreneur magazine!

But there’s a great deal that goes into getting from Point A to Point B. Coming up with an idea is the easy part. Most people can come up with something innovative that will relieve some annoyance that other people have. The difficult part, the area where the real hard work comes in, is convincing people that the value of your solution exceeds the price they will pay for it.

In achieving this goal, brand is critical. A company’s brand is its logo and all the tangible things that go into it but there’s a part of it that is not concrete — and that is business image.

Your Image as an Emerging Miami Tech Firm

How do you manage to create a strong brand if you’re just starting out with limited resources? You associate yourself with a bigger concept or theme. The physical presentation of the office space plays a powerful role in helping emerging tech firms overcome startup obstacles.

For an emerging tech firms to be perceived as congruous with the likes of the Apples, Ubers, AirBnbs, Facebooks, and Foursquares, of the world, the office should be branded that way. Certain design elements are popular among technology organizations, for example, the airy open office environment.

Many tech firms have included comfortable getaway spaces for times for employees working

long hours. Quest Workspaces, a provider of downtown Miami office space, provides private phone booths and even nap rooms for occasions when you’ve got to burn the midnight oil.

To accommodate those who may not have their own dedicated office space yet, many coworking companies have dseigned their business centers with these amenities in mind.

You’ll also see that as a departure from the opaque walls that are so popular among the more staid industries of the world, for tech firms glass enclosed conference rooms are the rage.

And lastly, as tech firms tend to pride themselves on being on the cutting edge, colorful artwork sets an innovative tone and inspires creativity for staff and visitors.  Picasso, anybody?

But what matters more than the physical makeup of the office, according to our next industry expert, is who you are surrounded by.

Community Impacts Productivity and Return on Tech Investment

How does the choice of office space impact a tech firm’s ability to reap gains from its investment? To find out more we spoke with Silvia Mah, Founder of the Hera Angels, the first female-only angel group in San Diego.

Silvia says that whenever she works with a tech startup that hesitates to spend on getting an office, even if it’s just a business address and phone number as offered through many virtual office packages, it creates questions about their level of professionalism and commitment to the business.

According to Silvia, being a part of a larger community through coworking or shared office space exposes you to a community “that holds you accountable, so that you have those watercooler conversations, those spontaneous conversations you would not be having in a home office.”  She also cites the value of mentorship and having access to a network of professional experts that can assist you with questions in a timely manner. These just-in-time strategies increase productivity.

Silva has seen her portfolio companies benefit tremendously from being at coworking spaces that strike a middle ground between the “cool kids’ table” (where people wear skinny jeans and play ping pong) and the stuffy, more closed business center environments. In between is where the maximum gains can be reached, according to Silvia: where there is professionalism and quiet without losing the sense of reciprocity and knowing what the neighbors are up to.

And it is this emotional factor, social intelligence, that so many tech firms underleverage. Silvia frequently sees brilliant concepts brought to the forefront by top technologists, scientists and prototype masters that fail to succeed for interpersonal reasons. Some founders excel at leadership — building the team, holding people accountable, setting milestones and meeting them, and engaging customers — while others simply do not. “The soft skills are where I see many tech firms struggle,” Silva says.

A key part of succeeding as a tech firm is matching the product to the market. The tech firms that do the best are the ones who talk to the customers, research the market, honestly know what customers want, and understand their purchasing reasons. Many founders will build something based upon having a great idea without knowing what the customer really wants. Upon realizing that it’s not the best fit, the successful tech firms are the ones who pivot fast, own it, and go forward with a more focused product strategy that fits the market better.

Silvia’s thoughts are echoed by Laura Kozelouzek, who runs Quest’s downtown Miami office space which houses many emerging tech firms. To quote from Laura K’s Quest, her book coming out in January 2018, “It’s important to realize that outcomes do come down to the strength of your team and having the right people on your side. You can accomplish only so much on your own.”

Digital birds of a feather flock together! To assist tech firms in enhancing their return on investment, Laura creates a village, a warm and supportive professional community that is constructed around each and every one of her clients in the space.

Recap: What to Look for When Choosing Downtown Miami Office Space

It’s not as much about the workspace itself as what it can do for you and your brand. Tech firms who are looking to ride the dynamic wave of entrepreneurship in South Florida need downtown Miami office space that gives you the freedom to evolve along with your workforce demands, whether it be the type or amount of workspace you require, as well as the way that the furniture is configured within, or the social and emotional advantages of being part of a nurturing community.

Anything we left off the wish list? Comment below.


Quest Workspaces

At Quest Workspaces, we’re proud to be different because we’ve built a leading brand based on old-fashioned, reliable business principles combined with a culture of innovation and constantly improving the customer experience.