Wearing a bright maroon printed dress and white Nikes, Sarina Grewal, 25, looks extremely comfortable sitting on the carpet in her office, talking animatedly to her colleague, Akhil Thakur, about a new design they are working on. Grewal and Thakur can often be found working together in the library area—even if it means sitting on the floor—to escape the noise and chatter near their desks. This jells well with the casual comfort vibe of Wieden+Kennedy’s (W+K’s) Delhi office. “I joined right after college because I didn’t want to waste time. This place made me want to stick around. It has been three years already!” says Grewal, an art director at the creative agency.
The mascot : The vibrant office in Saket, Delhi, is quite a hit. “I have often seen random people walking past and pointing out to the red horse at the entrance of our office. As a matter of fact, the red horse is the most popular selfie destination too,” she laughs. It has turned into a sort of mascot for the office, with official paraphernalia like coasters and tote bags bearing its picture.
This is not the only thing that makes the Delhi office stand out. On one side of the lounge is a ceiling full of illustrations. “These are all illustrations of my colleagues. When someone joins, we get their photos clicked, send it to a Pichwai artist, Mahendra Kumar in Ajmer, and get these illustrations made. It is a W+K tradition,” she says. The entrance also has a wall to showcase exemplary art/creative work by employees. For now, it also serves as a noticeboard announcing the next movie for their Thursday movie evenings.
“We have these fun things every week. Our Amsterdam office has wine Thursdays, so we decided to do movies instead. Some days we are at work till 2-3am and these things help us to de-stress,” adds Grewal.
The nomadic life: The W+K office is flexible about who sits where. By lunchtime, Grewal says, most people are sitting somewhere other than their usual seats, discussing projects. A round table near her work desk serves as an informal meeting space, as do couches in the lounge-cum-library area. The library is the most popular venue though, both for meetings and video-game sessions.
The studio has recently moved to the main office space. This, Grewal believes, is less alienating for the people working on the final product. The erstwhile studio is right opposite the main entrance, with a large Make In India lion standing proudly within. Make In India was one of the campaigns W+K worked on. Around the office are signs of other campaigns—posters from Nike’s last print campaign and miniature IndiGo aeroplane models.
The thinking spot: The library houses magazines and books on design and art. There are a few yearbooks as well. A table next to it serves as a standing desk—its height is adjustable. There are witty posters too. One such poster declares, “Be mediocre. You will sleep better.”
“The office is always very casual. You will see us joking and laughing. But then again, everyone here is passionate about the brands they get to handle. Which makes it a wonderful place to begin your career with,” Grewal says.
The Work Tour is a series which looks at how people are engaging with office design and how it impacts their productivity and positivity at work.