Are We Thinking Too Seriously about What the Desk Set Is?

Over the last couple of days we’ve been thinking about what it means to be part of the Desk Set. What do members of this tribe have in common? Well, we show up at an office (most days) and we care about the design of that space. But beyond that, is there a glue that binds this community? Are we all alike in some other way?

Seriously, we’ve been wrestling with the issue. We, the Desk Set, are having a bit of an identity crisis.

Although please don’t tell us it’s a midlife one — because we’re only two months old and we’ve got big things to accomplish before this is all said and done.

Anyway, we figured out long ago that when something is bothering us, there’s really only one way to deal with it. And that’s to write about it. So we put some thoughts down on “paper”.

We hope you’ll let us know what you think at or Office_Envy on Twitter.


Every decade or so a new phrase emerges into the popular lexicon, allowing us to easily refer to a subset of the population whose energy influences the culture of the era. There were hippies of the 1960s and ‘70s followed by the yuppies of the 1980s; then came the soccer moms of the ‘90s, and the Nascar dads of the early 21st century. Certainly you’ve heard the terms, maybe you’ve even thrown them around yourself. Together we’ve worn them down into clichés. Now, as the second decade of the new millennium picks up momentum, a new faction is gaining force.

Enter the Desk-Set, a generation of business people so inspiring, inventive and exciting that they make running a business look as sexy as a strut down the runway and desk-setting as thrilling as jetsetting. The desk-set blurs the boundaries between work and play. They work at companies like Facebook, Apple and Google. They carry laptops, smart phones, ipads and tweet from all of them. And yes they have desks, but their lives are not constrained by the walls of cubicles.

via Encadria Staffing Solutions

This new crowd is may be young, casual and cool, but they are painstaking in their preferences. They are discriminating and discerning when it comes to design – from the usability of an app in the digital world to the livability of their space in the physical one. They work smarter, communicate faster, and share their opinions more widely than their predecessors. They infuse inventive and sustainable design into all elements of their life, from their wardrobe to their home, and their offices are no different.

Peel back the curtain and look inside today’s most exciting businesses and you’ll find that they have this in common: inspired office design. These companies understand that the environment in which business takes place is both a reflection of their culture as well as a driver of it. Brands have always been built on the images that they convey to the public – and recently the most successful companies have turned that eye for imagery inward. The result is a large scale transformation of the space where work is conducted.


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