Should Startups Spend Cheaply, Expensively, or Wisely?
Designing an office can be a real pain - especially when you realize just how much it can cost. For startups - especially ones that have raised a round or two of funding - balancing between spending big to attract talent and being frugal to make the funds last can be a difficult decision to make. Even for experienced entrepreneurs like Paul Graham of Y Combinator and Joel Spolsky of Fog Creek Software, advice is mixed. Graham errs on the frugal side of life, while Spolsky believes that the costs can be worth it.
While such high-level decisions are important to make in the life of a startup - at some point you actually need to buy office furniture and have your employees do work in it. So when that point comes, will you go cheap? Or will you go big? In my world, it seems that being cheap or overspending aren't the only options - and actually hide a much more important line of questioning.
That is - whether or not to spend wisely.
You see, the most important considerations are going to be whether to buy chairs or a kegerator, or a conference table and a ping-pong table. Or maybe give employees raises? The point is that you shouldn't spend your time fretting over spending money on a $200 chair or a $500 chair - after all, you employees need somewhere to sit - so just pick one. What you should be fretting over is which decision is the most wise option? Which will be the most useful and durable for the price over the long term? Which are absolutely necessary and which are unnecessary?
If you're in the market for furniture that is priced just right, are both versatile and durable - here are a few options.
Turnstone's Bivi - A Versatile Table/Desk
The Bivi is more than just a table and more than just a desk. It can act as anything from a single workstation to a benching system for 16. Built-in casual seating options, storage, power. It can also simply be a table - and the best part is that it is incredibly durable, well-designed, and cost-effective.
Turnstone's Cobi - A Flexible and Comfortable Chair
Spending big bucks on a chair can be depressing, especially for a startup - but buying used and/or broken chairs can be just as depressing. Luckily, the Cobi chair is a great mid-priced chair that will last years.
Turnstone's Multi-Functional Campfire Big Table
Meetings will always exist, but these days many meeting are happening standing up. The Campfire Big Table comes at normal chair height as well as standing height - can include built-in power and lighting. The Campfire Big Table is designed in such a way that people just swarm to the table to mingle - and the best part is that they are still at work.