A pop-up office that appeared out of nowhere in Grindelallee 129 in early April had vanished by early May. Not so the many changing creative projects, art exhibitions, presentations, performances that the shop accommodated temporarily. The property is one of many in the city that Hamburg Kreativ Gesellschaft makes available to artists, designers and other creative professionals at favourable conditions. The company recently used 100 square metre of spaces itself and brought 15 freelancers and employees from the music industry and aviation together for five days. Participants brainstormed about new approaches to shaping cultural change across departmental and company boundaries.
Lufthansa Technik and fischerAppelt
During the first three trials there, employees from companies as diverse as Otto Group, Lufthansa Technik, fischerAppelt or Jung von Matt identified similar everday challenges. During a so-called deep dive or in-depth examination, they quickly got to the roots of problems and turned concrete solutions into prototypes in a design studio. Participants focused mainly on organisational structures, new approaches to knowledge management and room concepts that boost creativity.
Inputting cultural change
Jonathan Pengl, musician and assistant to management at Ensemble Resonanz, remarked: “I found it very surprising that similar challenges exist in the most diverse industries.” Pengl had worked in a pop-up office in a team with IT specialists, creative freelancers and HR managers, he added.
Every week, employees from large organisations worked alongside freelancers from classical creative fields such as design or music and that was by no means coincidentlal, said Jenny Kornmacher, head of an eleven-strong project team at Hamburg Kreativ Gesellschaft. She added: “Their own working cultures allow creative people to provide special input on cultural change. We matched the teams with that in mind.”
Using potential for innovation
The pop-up office is one of many formats that Hamburg Kreativ Gesellschaft is using as part of the EU-funded project the “Cross Innovation Hub”. The project encourages creative and other industries to exchange ideas and to tap new innovation potential. This unfolds in hackathons, bar camps and start-up days. An accelerator programme is set to launch in autumn targeting interdisciplinary start-up teams.
Although the pop-up office has disappeared from Grindelallee, it may well reappear soon elsewhere. However, the organisers would first like to determine which concrete benefits the participants actually reaped from the pop-up office for their daily work. This will be the topic of an alumni meeting at a later date.
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