Next-decade office design: A discussion with HGA architects on form, function and the future

April 2022
Audio file


  • 9:05 - Data is amazing but be careful, because people don’t know what they don’t know. So, one of our clients had a ton of survey data for us and almost all of it said that their employees wanted to come in two days a week. As we started doing user group meetings, we heard overwhelmingly that almost no one planned on coming in two days a week.
  • 15:25 - We’ve seen a huge increase in building more outdoor space for meeting, for eating, for relaxing. There’s the obvious added safety of fresh air, but I think the more important thing is people realized how much they like being outside. We’ve definitely seen a huge shift to creating more productive office spaces outside.
  • 27:42 - In the future, I think we’ll see the death of the 9-to-5 work day. Frankly, I think 9-to-5 has been dead for a while. Technology has enabled us to work synchronously, and traffic makes us not want to work from 9-to-5 because then everyone is on the road at the same time; it's worse for the planet. And so, because of our ability to do all of those things, I think the office becomes a zone for people who want to work there because it’s better for them to work there.

Where will we work in 2030? What will it look like? How will it function? These are big questions facing business leaders worldwide, and to get some answers Joe Kornik, Editor-in-Chief of VISION by Protiviti, welcomes HGA’s Melissa Pesci and Haley Nelson to the VISION by Protiviti podcast. HGA is a Minneapolis-based national interdisciplinary design firm rooted in architecture, interior design and engineering, and both Melissa and Haley specialize in workplace design supporting clients nationally. On the program, we discuss the future of the office, specifically its design, and Melissa and Haley have some interesting ideas about form, function and the future of the workplace in 2030 and beyond.


Follow the VISION by Protiviti podcast where we put megatrends under the microscope and look into the future to examine the strategic implications of those transformational shifts that will impact the C-suite and executive boardrooms worldwide. In this ongoing series, we invite some of today’s most innovative and insightful thinkers — from both inside and outside Protiviti — to share their vision of the future and explore how today’s big ideas will impact business over the next decade and beyond.

Melissa Pesci is a Principal at HGA, specializing in workplace planning and design. She collaborates with clients globally to reimagine the workplace as an incubator for innovation and entrepreneurship. She has more than 15 years of experience in space planning, interior design, program development and strategic planning for notable organizations in technology and professional services. Melissa speaks frequently at national design conferences and has been featured in leading industry journals. She has a Master of Architecture degree from University of Michigan.

Melissa Pesci
Principal, HGA
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Haley Nelson is an associate vice president and senior interior designer in the Los Angeles office of HGA. With expertise as a workplace designer and strategist, Haley focuses on the cultivation of original insights that support the creation of places for people and organizations to thrive in. Many of her projects have achieved the highest levels of certification for sustainability and wellbeing, have been published, and have won design and sustainability awards. Haley is a thought leader and has presented at numerous venues on how design can positively impact people.

Haley Nelson
Associate Vice President, HGA
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