BUSINESS NEWS WARE MALCOMB ANNOUNCES COMPLETION OF LAUNCHDARKLY HEADQUARTERS IN UPTOWN OAKLAND Ware Malcomb , an award- winning international design firm, announced construction is complete on LaunchDarkly’s headquarters in uptown Oakland, California. Ware Malcomb provided interior architecture and design and branding services for the project. LaunchDarkly, a software company that produces the leading feature management platform, is located in the popular uptown neighborhood of downtown Oakland at the Lake Merritt Plaza. The highly sought-after plaza offers spectacular views of Lake Merritt, as well as quick access to the Oakland airport and the BART station. The 30,000 square foot remodel offers office upgrades across two floors. The design highlights the value of community within LaunchDarkly, paralleling the culture of Oakland. Strategically placed open-concept areas throughout the office promote employee
engagement. The expansive break room features a full kitchen with modern appliances and decor, with light colored wood, delicate accents, clean lines and exposed ceilings. The people-centric design encourages employees to congregate and foster a community culture within the break space. Other design features accommodate further company growth and alternative ways of working. The office has many flexible spaces that allow for independent work, small huddles or large collaborative meetings. Ware Malcomb integrated LaunchDarkly’s brand colors of navy blues and grays with light wood and greenery throughout the space. The branding team also developed space-themed graphics to align with LaunchDarkly’s company image. “Our focus was to bring the LaunchDarkly brand to life while weaving in the authenticity of Oakland culture,” said Rhea Butler, Director, Interior Architecture & Design of Ware Malcomb’s San Francisco office. “It
was exciting to contribute to the growth of LaunchDarkly.” The general contractor for the project was WCI-General Contractors. Established in 1972, Ware Malcomb is a contemporary and expanding full service design firm providing professional architecture, planning, interior design, civil engineering, branding and building measurement services to corporate, commercial/residential developer and public/institutional clients throughout the world. With office locations throughout the United States, Canada and Mexico, the firm specializes in the design of commercial office, corporate, industrial, science & technology, healthcare, retail, auto, public/ institutional facilities and renovation projects. Ware Malcomb is recognized as an Inc. 5000 fastest-growing private company and a Hot Firm by Zweig Group. The firm is also ranked among the top 15 architecture/engineering firms in Engineering News-Record’s Top 500 Design Firms.
JON PARRISH, from page 3
Programs such as an ESOP ease the transfer of ownership by dispersing a percentage of ownership across all employees. By selling off shares to that next level down, the company provides themselves with a plan to efficiently buy out top-level leadership and continue long-term viability. “Getting employees at all levels to buy in to thinking and acting like an owner is invaluable because employee-owned firms have more stability, higher survival rates, less turnover, and fewer layoffs in recessions.” When employees buy into their own company, they are putting their eggs into a basket they can influence. At Fleis & VandenBrink, the mantra is that stock is never given, it must be bought. Gifts can be taken for granted, but by writing that check for the purchase of stock, you tend to place a different value on what it is worth. The greatest benefit you receive with encouraging ownership among young professionals will come when everyone on your team truly understands that when one succeeds, you all succeed. Getting everyone to think, act, and make decisions like an owner gets everyone moving in the same direction, toward the same common goals and for the greater good. It is never too soon to ask young professionals to take ownership and strategically help you get where you want to go. Your future success may depend on it. JON PARRISH is an associate and director of the Marketing Group at Fleis & VandenBrink. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org .
sharing plans allow the opportunity for all employees to benefit from the company’s financial success, often much more quickly than the direct purchase options. These programs also serve as attractive recruiting and retention tools and help build the ownership culture. Having skin in the game not only allows the young professional to invest in themselves, but it gives them a voice in making some of the company’s biggest decisions through the ability to vote as a shareholder. It also helps your company with recruiting and retaining younger staff when they feel confident enough to relay their unfiltered opinions and know that more than one generation of leaders is making all the decisions. The earlier a young professional invests increases the opportunity for a larger return. Dividends also provide more money to reinvest which makes it easier in the long run to buy additional shares and increase earnings. Getting entry-level employees to understand that the decisions they make each day effect the bottom line can be a challenge initially. But when they see others in the firm with ownership stakes behaving and making decisions that are best for the company, they are more likely to follow suit. Learning the culture of accountability from owners closer to their peer group is invaluable. Having young professionals become owners also helps immensely with transitioning out leaders at the top level. Many firms in our industry, especially first-generation firms, struggle with a top-heavy ownership structure. For a company to continue after the founders move on, they have to sell out to a larger conglomerate, bring in someone with deep pockets, or have a plan to spread out their ownership over time to the next level of leadership within the company.
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THE ZWEIG LETTER MAY 31, 2021, ISSUE 1394
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