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49 - The Importance of a Productive and Comfortable Workspace

Productive Workspaces

In this episode, we will discuss the story of our Sioux City office, highlight valuable insights from our team through a survey on space comfort and productivity, and explore the exceptional features and amenities that enrich our work environment.

The Story of Our Sioux City Office


Our Sioux City office has made significant progress in a short time. We've personalized the workspace to provide comfort and enhance our team's productivity. Above is what the space first looked like, and below is that same space now. 



This week's featured cocktail is a refreshing Coronarita, which happens to be a favorite among our team. It's a perfect way to relax and unwind after a productive day at the office.


  • 2 oz Tequila
  • .75 oz Triple Sec
  • 1 oz Lime juice or syrup
  • 5-1 oz Agave Syrup (Depending on sweetness preference)
  • Coronita bottle 7 oz
  • Lime wedge
  • Rimming Salt


  1. Prepare a schooner glass by rimming it with salt.
  2. Add spirits, lime juice, and agave syrup to a shaker with ice.
  3. Shake for 30 seconds.
  4. Pour the mixture into the prepared glass.
  5. Tip an open Coronita bottle into the glass.
  6. Garnish with a lime wedge.

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Episode Transcript:

Rich: Oh, I see, okay.

Catelin: Uh, you're coming, you're coming in the middle because I didn't want to miss this explanation. Zach sent out a mystery survey. I thought that I forgot to do my homework. I was like, where my answer, where are my answers? I didn't get the survey. Did I forget to do something? And you had the exact same reaction, but it turns out

Rich: Nothing about a survey.

Catelin: Zach is a sneaky, sneaky, sneaky Biatch and just, uh, just like sent out some questions about our workspace in Sioux City. And so we're going to chat about that later on. But first, so I wanted to, when you were like, well, I'm like, let's record this. This will be funny.

Rich: Yeah. I mean, most of the time I don't know what's going on in the office.

Rich: Like the number of things that happen without me knowing anything. By a survey. Yeah. Cause that just drops like, well, you know, part of this is in response to some survey results we got. And I'm like, survey, who was surveyed? Who's talking about the office? What's going on? What's happening?

Catelin: So it's like, it's like family feud.

Catelin: We asked eight Sioux city employees. Can I see standing desks? Show me standing desks.

Rich: That was your contribution. You really wanted the standing desks.

Catelin: I did, and you know what? Well, you can talk about it in a minute. We can talk about it in a minute,

Rich: but we gotta get into the intro, I think. Yeah, I know. Do you want

Catelin: to hear about a coronarita?

Rich: Um, I think Sure. We can just jump right into the cocktail. Why not? Zach did a really nice job of formatting our notes for us. And we are all over the place with these things so far. So, um, so I'm all over the

Catelin: place all the time.

Rich: Corona Rita. I was aware of this survey because it was controversial. It was selected by several team members from our Sioux city office.

Rich: Uh, and is, uh, allegedly a team favorite. Now I float between offices and clearly don't count on this because I'm not a beer person. I love a margarita.

Catelin: So what, yeah, what I have found is like at a, when, when your margarita is made of like green and tequila and salt on the rim, the Corona Rita balances out the sweetness.

Catelin: It's more than like a, like a bottled margarita mix. If I'm gonna have like a traditional actual margarita that's made from like lime and simple syrup and tequila I don't need the

Rich: You don't need the beer. I don't need the

Catelin: cutting. Yeah.

Rich: So what kills me is I was like at a bar and I was like, what is the skinny margarita?

Rich: Like, what is that about? And they're like, Oh, it's just lime and tequila and triple sec and a little bit of simple syrup. And I'm like, but that's a margarita. That's a margarita. They're like, no, no, no. We use our mix for this other one. And it's got like 150 calories. And, but, and I'm like, and it's fluorescent

Catelin: green.

Rich: Yeah. I'm like, then you're dumb. Um, before we get to the Corona Rita recipe though, which is, I mean, it's spoiler Margarita with a Corona bottle upside down in it, but, um, Our Margarita. So I am super excited because Trader Joe's has their jalapeno lime.

Catelin: It's your time to shine.

Rich: So if this just tells you how much Brian knows me, he came back one day from a grocery trip because I like, sometimes I just opt out of grocery trips.

Rich: I'm not a, like there's people there. I don't want to deal with a lot of stuff. Sometimes I go, but sometimes I don't. So he came back cause he was over there for a haircut or something in that part of town and he came back with literally a case, 24 bottles, Brian, I think it was what an angel or something.

Rich: An angel. Um, but yeah, and he's like, yeah, he's like, so it just hit Trader Joe's and the dude was like, yeah, people are just grabbing these by like the, the carton. So he's like, we're just leaving them in the carton. Like they just were leaving them there so you could easily grab like this mini pallet.

Rich: It's like the little cardboard thing that they come in. Um, so we have them in the outdoor fridge, we have an indoor fridge, we have in the mini fridge, we have in the basement fridge, like we got them everywhere because they have to be cold. I'm not going to have any one of those bottles. Like just sitting somewhere.

Catelin: Yeah.

Rich: Um, so anyway, that one, so for those who don't know my, like go to summer beverage, quick margarita is you just use that jalapeno limeade, which has a little bit of sugar in it, but it's a lot of juice and it's delicious and not super spicy, uh, and tequila and that's it and some ice and you're good to go, no quantro needed, no simple syrup needed, just jalapeno limeade.

Rich: So you can make a margarita like. on the fly. I'm really excited for you. That's not our drink today. So talk to me about the Corona Rita.

Catelin: Well, it is two ounces of tequila and this is also, so I would, I would take issue with this as a Corona Rita just because this is actually making a traditional margarita and not using like the Jose Cuervo ready to pour.

Catelin: Version of a Marg, right? So, um, I would a pinch. Yes, and that's that's like Every cocktail mix has its has its place. Um,

Rich: okay. So you would say this is frame of mind.

Catelin: So this is like the elevated Corona Rita.

Rich: Yeah.

Catelin: Right.

Rich: Okay. We'll call it that. Um, so if you're, but you would normally, like you said, put a Corona in one when you're using that sugar on the rocks.

Rich: Yeah. Mix on the rocks. Although I've seen him in the blended ones and it's kind of fun because the beer just kind of oozes out slowly through the ice. It's very exciting.

Catelin: I don't want my cocktail to ooze.

Rich: Alright, so two ounces of tequila, double that. Two

Catelin: ounces of tequila, uh, three quarters ounce of triple sec, one ounce of lime juice or syrup?

Rich: Lime syrup? Oh, like, oh, that would make it more lime. Maybe that's the green. Is that meant to be the green? Yeah, so that um, is it the Rose's Lime, I think?

Catelin: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Um, or like sour mix, I think would be like another, um, yeah. Like, right? I know, just immediate heartburn, immediate heartburn. Uh, half to one ounce of agave, depending on your sweetness preference.

Catelin: A seven ounce bottle of Corona, which is a Coronita. So it's like a little Corona. Oh, it's a little bottle. Yeah. Yep. And a lime wedge. And then you can rim your glass with salt. Add your spirits, lime juice, and agave to a shaker with ice. Shake until frosty. Pour the mixture into the glass and tip an open Coronita bottle into the glass.

Catelin: Garnish with your lime wedge.

Rich: So are the little bottles and cans of Coca Cola called Coquitas?

Catelin: Maybe, I don't know.

Rich: I think a coquita is something else. I think it's a thing. Yeah, it's like a, yeah,

Catelin: I'm rusty. It also would be like C O Q U I, coquito,

Rich: coquito, coquita. C O Q U I T A. All right. So this one comes from, I think a coquito

Catelin: is a cocktail.

Catelin: I'm going to look now. Oh, yeah,

Rich: that makes sense to have a cocktail. And now we're like a throwback. We didn't know we're having, um, it feels like a Brazilian cocktail.

Catelin: Oh no. Okay. I knew this. I was like a coquito. I know this. Um, a coquito is basically just like vegan eggnog. It's like,

Rich: uh,

Catelin: Oh no. Oh my gosh.

Catelin: Well, I mean the eggnog, I

Rich: don't like the egg in it. Like that eggy, milky, um, So vegan might be okay.

Catelin: It's coconut. They use coconut milk.

Rich: Oh, that might be okay and like nutmeg. Okay.

Catelin: Yeah Yeah, I was like, no, this is the thing I had to like through the brain Rolodex and find it. I

Rich: feel like they put vodka in that somewhere

Catelin: Um, no, it's

Rich: rum.

Rich: It's

Catelin: rum. Um. Okay, that makes sense. Vanilla, coconut milk, coconut cream, rum, and spices.

Rich: Because you cook, like, things that grow together, go together, right? So I grow coconuts, I grow sugar cane, I have rum, I put those together, I make a drink.

Catelin: Yeah.

Rich: Um, I love that saying, I don't remember where that came from, but things that grow together, go together.

Catelin: It's like the three sisters plants, corn, squash, and beans.

Rich: Yes. And I know where it came from. It came from why I looked up, why do we eat applesauce with pork? Because I figured it was just from the Brady Bunch episode that they invented it. But no, it's like medieval times they had pigs and they had apples.

Rich: And Mm-Hmm. they went together. That's why there's always like the roasted pig had the apple stuffed in its mouth. Mm-Hmm. . Because they both are like the, they both get harder. It's like fall in the fall. Yeah. Yeah.

Catelin: Yeah. Mm-Hmm. . Alright,

Rich: so that recipe, um, not the pig and Apple's thing, but the Nita, uh, it's a different episode in the uh, yeah, the Nita came from KEG Works.

Rich: So that's where Zach dug up this che

Catelin: sources. Yeah. So like when we go, um, there's a. There's a really great local Mexican restaurant across the river in South Sioux City that does a beautiful cornita. Yeah, that's Mi Familia in South Sioux.

Rich: Which means my family, for those who don't know. Yes.

Catelin: And those are what we call close cognates.

Catelin: Come for the marketing, stay for the Spanish 101.

Rich: Exactly. I think we can both do a little Spanish 101.

Catelin: Yeah.

Rich: Um, yeah, no. And it was fun because I think I've only been there once with you guys because we go like sushi is usually the jam that we do when I'm up there. Yeah. Um, but we went over there once because I think I was the one who wanted like a wet burrito and you're like, let's all go for burritos and we went there and it's so comfortable and nice and they're so friendly and I loved it.

Catelin: We get the same server almost every time and she is just delightful. Yeah. I haven't yet made her right. I haven't made her tell us her name yet. Maybe we should. That's my next mission. Hello. We've been here six times and I don't know your name or your birthday or your children's names. And that's weird for me.

Catelin: Please tell me everything about your life.

Rich: Yeah, you and your child, as we've learned, will just talk to any stranger anywhere. That's correct. And remember what's going on with their life. She told me

Catelin: yesterday I guess Brooks, Jessica's son, had to leave. He left daycare early to go get a haircut. And then we were driving somewhere and she pointed out like a random place and she's like that's a haircut place.

Catelin: Brooks is there right now. And I didn't know that he had like left. So I was like, okay, sure, whatever. And then this morning Jessica shared a photo of Brooks after his haircut and I was like, oh, holy shit. You actually knew what was going on. You were like really telling me that Brooks was going to get a haircut.

Rich: You were like, we could, well, maybe not at that place. Right. Yeah. And that's what Jessica said. She's like, chances

Catelin: are it wasn't the, yeah,

Rich: but she didn't put the two together. Like didn't put together that there are more than one, no more than one haircut place. No. I love that with kids where it's like, I just want to go to the store and it's like, okay, well, like you've got to now interpret like, are you going to target?

Rich: Is it the grocery store? Like where do they want?

Catelin: Oh no. We have the names of, she knows target cause she's my child. The jewelry store is called the sucker place. And if you don't have a child that frequents the jewelry store enough, then I'm sad for you. Uh, but she knows Target. Where the sucker place is.

Catelin: She wants to go there.

Rich: That was the banger for us. We always got the dumb, dumb suckers.

Catelin: The little dumb dumbs. Oh yeah. Well, if you go to Greenberg's in Sioux city, they'll give you a whole ass. Tootsie pop. They give you the big suckers, which is probably why Dorothy is like, take me there.

Rich: I bet you can't drive by one without her recognizing the logo.

Rich: No, she knows. Recognition and loyalty. Additionally,

Catelin: it's like across the street from Target. So. Can we stop there first? And then, um, Opa time is the fry place. Which is wild

Rich: because it's a Greek place, but their fries are so good. I haven't been back since they reopened. Oh my God. Next time I'm up. I don't know when I'm coming up again because I'm not teaching right now.

Rich: Yeah. Um, I'll figure it out. Yeah. Anyway, we probably ought to take a break. Bread

Catelin: recognition. Enjoy your coronita. Let's talk about some, some comfy spaces when we come back.

Catelin: We're, we're back from our dance break. Rich and I are reading our homework that we didn't get invited to complete.

Rich: Still staring off into space. Like my finger in my mouth. What do I do? Um. Well, I, so like,

Catelin: I think this intro part, I'm curious about this. How did it says, how did we decide? Like I had anything to do with it. How did you and the leadership team decide on this location and building in, in Sioux City? So we're talking about our, our office in Sioux City, above Council Oak supply company, 101 West third street.

Catelin: It's not, it's not private, but how did you, yeah, right. Okay. Our local SEO should be optimized.

Rich: Though I think it was like Bing still had us on Court Street, and I'm like, that's like four offices

Catelin: ago. Four addresses ago, yeah. So how did you decide on this location and this building?

Rich: So we turned this location down three times.

Rich: Thrice. And before we actually signed the lease, because we weren't looking to lease, we were looking to buy. So our goal cause we're very community oriented and we want to help the communities we live and work in thrive and all of that. And same thing for our clients who are outside of, you know, Omaha or Sioux city.

Rich: And so we were looking at buying a building and renovating it. So our goal was to have some sort of retail in the street level that we could lease. And then have a second floor that we could renovate for ourselves. Um, and we found a really good building and we were going through some of the financing, but the owner of that building just wouldn't.

Rich: Flex on anything. Mm hmm. And if you've never done commercial property, there's a couple things. So one you have to have a much larger down payment than you do on a residential but to your inspections are Crazy because these buildings are in downtown. They touch other buildings. So their walls are dependent on the walls next there You know, we're on a river with a lot.

Rich: We've got a very high water table so the basements which they have have to be like checked and looked at and so your inspections, you know, on your house, like when you do a house, it's like what, like six or 700 bucks to get an inspection. Eight. I think

Catelin: the last one we did was like 850 or a thousand. So I mean like not nothing, but not in terms of house purchasing.

Catelin: It's.

Rich: You're looking at like 000 in inspections for commercial property, which is like comparatively, like, yeah, it's fine. Um, but you don't want to do that unless you know you're going to go forward. So we ended up like having this issue and there were a couple of things we wanted more details on and we wanted to adjust the price a little bit and they just weren't flexible and seemed to not care.

Rich: So we bailed on it. Um, and then we looked at a few other buildings. Uh, one of them, the entire back wall was literally falling off. That was the one with the

Catelin: bat, wasn't it?

Rich: Yes, that one had the, but cool space. Cause it had a basement. We could have turned into like a photo studio. It was very cool.

Rich: Speakeasy or a Tiki bar. And then the main floor would have been leased. And then we would have been on the second floor. Very long, like shotgun building. Um, but yeah, that, that is for sale

Catelin: still.

Rich: Well, that's because we looked at, you know, I talked to their architects and an engineer about the cost to shore up that back wall.

Rich: And they said, yeah, you can't shore it up. Uh, it has to come down and be rebuilt, which is like, okay, then let's just find a piece of land and build something. Um, so anyway, we were still like, I just got frustrated and put it on hold. It was just like, forget it. We're staying where we are. We're not doing anything.

Rich: Uh, and our realtor, um, brought this building to us and he's like, Hey, like the owner is really looking for something cool to be in the second floor. I think you guys really fit. It fits your vibe. It's the style of what you're looking at. It's a really old building, 1800s.

Catelin: 1910, because it's the same age as our house.

Catelin: Oh, is it 1910? Okay. I'm pretty sure.

Rich: Um, I thought it was like 1896 or something, but, um, either way, very old building, more than a hundred years old. Um, and so he showed it to us and it was just a big open space. Like that's what a lot of these are in these old buildings. They'd renovated the main floor.

Rich: And had opened the coffee shop and supply company, but the second floor was, um, I think we can probably put some pictures with this. I've used some of them on, uh, social media, but it was just big open, like really rough wood floors, uh, posts, a few posts in the middle. There's like six posts exposed brick.

Rich: Um,

Catelin: you're right. 1895.

Rich: Ah,

Catelin: interesting. Um, sorry. Yeah.

Rich: Um, I had to, but, um, we looked at it and just thought like, yeah, it's a great space. It's really cool. I can see us building this out, but why do I want to put 30 or 40, 000 into building out a space that I'm not going to live in like forever or own, like it just doesn't make sense.

Rich: Um, so we passed and they came back and we passed and they came back again and we passed. Um, And then I was just like, fine, I'll take Jesse and Jessica and we'll look. So, and we quite literally crawled up scaffolding. That's right. There were no stairs at the front. And wasn't it like

Catelin: August? It was like hot.

Catelin: It was hot. And awful. Super hot. And

Rich: gross. Um, and so we climbed up and like, I think they were as blown away by the space as I was. And we just had a really long talk. Are we going to do this? And we went back to the realtor and said, look, if I'm going to build out this space, like with our dime, I want some concessions and you know, not to give away everything, but we came to a really good agreement with our landlord on what we would build out and the permanent things like that would stay.

Rich: If we were ever to leave, um, that we're also in a 10 year lease. So, uh, we've been out at five years. Um, but I don't.

Catelin: We're like half, has it been two years? It'll be two years in, I

Rich: think so.

Catelin: Or is it three?

Rich: No, I have no concept of time. We're at almost five years on our Omaha office. We just crossed four years there.

Rich: So it must be two or three in Sioux city. I think it's two. Oh no. I think it's three because I think our rent has gone up twice since it goes up annually. Okay. Um, So anyway, um, saw this space had some good visions for it and yeah, we just decided, okay, fine. We'll lease this. The other big piece was the lease didn't start until we needed to occupy and actually it was 30 days after we occupied.

Rich: We got a month free at the front, um, to do some build out, which was really nice.

Catelin: Yeah, I think what's great about this space is that, um, in terms of like the relationship that we have with the landlord is that they're also very community minded. I mean, they've done a ton of revitalization work. Um, still doing

Rich: more there.

Rich: Yeah.

Catelin: Brad is really passionate about Sioux City and making cool stuff happen here. And, um, I think that has just been a nice, effervescence of, of, I don't know, goals for our community. And I think

Rich: that's part of what kind of sold us on it. I spent quite a bit of time like just chatting with Brad about it.

Rich: And it's like, okay, so we want to improve the community. And maybe we do that by leasing this space and helping like fund his other efforts instead of us literally owning our own thing. It's like mutual aid,

Catelin: right? Like, Our, our effort towards this can be built upon by someone with additional capital, which is, I mean, really the struggle in any expansion goal almost always is.

Catelin: If I had known him

Rich: beforehand, I probably would have gone to him for some capital on a building of our own and had to go in on it for the first five years or ten years and whatever. Because when we were looking at, honestly, the retail would have paid the lease on the entire building, like the mortgage.

Rich: Um, and it would have been nice, but we also would have been landlords and then in charge of like furnaces going out. Ew.

Catelin: Gross.

Rich: Don't own. Uh. Owning a home, it's like, whoa.

Catelin: When we talk about like what in that early stage, what was exciting to you, what inspired you in the like layout and design, furnishings, fixtures.

Rich: So I could instantly see kind of where things were, obviously the desks were going to be by the windows. What Uh, the kitchen had to be toward the back because it backs up against the bathrooms. Water. The downstairs kitchen is under there for, yeah, water. Um, important. Um. It's not even the water. It's always the

Catelin: drainage.

Catelin: Correct. That's tricky. You can run water anywhere. Almost anywhere. But the, yeah. The drain is really what.

Rich: the side of the building. Right. That's what they would have done in the 1800s, the side. Um. Um. Um. So I think it was that it easily carved itself up as we needed it to. Um, but we wanted a big open concept.

Rich: Yeah. Great big open concept with logical areas for where different functions should be. Um, and then the decision to kind of box in the mechanical room, like floor to ceiling, that was one where they were like, what? You want the walls to go all the way to the ceiling? I'm like, yeah, like it's a mechanical room.

Rich: It's where the, we're putting our server in there. We're putting our printers in there. It's storage. Like, I just want it to be this nice sealed off space with a cute door and nobody has to know what happens back there. Mm hmm. Um, so yeah, so I think that was the biggest thing. Um, the potential. So we have 16 foot ceilings in the back.

Rich: Some foot. Yeah. And 12 foot in the front or the other way around. Other way

Catelin: around.

Rich: Yeah.

Catelin: They're higher in the Yeah,

Rich: it slopes toward the back. Yeah. Um, but still, like our shortest ceiling height is 12 feet, like Mm-Hmm. , which meant we had to buy a new ladder, which we do have in it's back there . Um, but yeah.

Rich: And then just, I love raw space. Mm-Hmm. . So lighting. Um, furniture floor coverings, like they refinished the hardwood floors and they were beautiful, but it's very loud and echoey with wood and black and there's no like finished ceiling. It's just open rafters, um, which is really great too. Um, and so we had, you know, like the carpet tiles that we put down, um, very easy to put down.

Rich: They don't destroy the wood floor, um, but they do mute sound quite a bit, you know, when you're in that area. Yeah. And just the ability to work with, um, an interior designer at an architecture firm and talk to them about their ideas. Yes. Yes. Yeah. Um, CMBA was so great with this. Mm hmm. Um.

Catelin: And the, the like, zoom y walk through video that they gave was so helpful in like conceptualizing what the space would look like.

Catelin: Best programming video. yeah.

Rich: They had an intern do it for us so we didn't have to pay for the video. Those angels. They take such good care of us paying for people's time because it's great to make money too. Um, but yeah, no, they were fantastic and love them a lot. And I think it helps. And this kind of might get into where we go.

Rich: They know our culture, a client, and we know theirs and we match really, really, really well. Um, like I think any one of our employees could sit down at a desk in their office and feel comfortable and at home. Um, like. Not with the architecture stuff. They couldn't do the job, but they could work from that environment and feel good.

Rich: And their environment. Their environments actually are very similar to ours. They have more offices than we do, but they have open spaces as well because architects need a lot of room to like spread out and do things.

Catelin: Yeah. So yeah.

Rich: So that was, uh, that was fun. So let's talk about this survey. So this is what I was holding.

Rich: We

Catelin: didn't get to, I was like, Zach, why didn't I get to do that? He's like, you're going to do it live. You're going to, you're going to do it right now. It's like, Oh, okay. As long as I have an opportunity to provide feedback, I'll be happy.

Rich: I'm looking at the first one and I thought it was just an overall, how well do you like the space?

Rich: But it's not, it's comfortable of your workspace. Um, cause I was like, average of 4. 8. I'm like, okay, Zach, who didn't give us a five? I'm going to need to know. Uh, except I don't, I'm not going to be like, we're not vindictive or anything like that. But, um, and it's finding your workspace very comfortable. And I think that's, that's a subjective thing.

Rich: Like. How, um, comfortable, you know, is your area? Um, so what was interesting to me is people took workspace, I think, to be the total workspace, it looks like, versus I would think of like my, your desk, which I would probably, for me, I would probably give it a two or three cause my desk is always piled with crap.

Rich: Not so bad in the office, but really bad at home. Um, um, I think, um,

Catelin: I was just gonna find some like, common ground here is like the music and, Mm-Hmm. . Open concept. Comfy couch.

Rich: Think the chat. Yeah. The couch, the music and the ability to just chat. Mm-Hmm. And have conversations and like speak out loud as opposed

Catelin: Yeah.

Catelin: Like, yeah.

Rich: Cause we chat all the time, isn't that funny? This is our second office with that couch, the history of the company. There's always been a brightly colored couch. It was red to begin with, which was weird to me. Um, but then it shifted to, uh, orange. I love a red couch, but it's just not our. Brand like it's our colors.

Rich: And so that couch is a, um, Oh, I can't remember his name. Jonathan Lewis design. Sure. Um, John, um, and we actually had Nebraska furniture Mart put, uh, custom Do the fabric. So it took us like three months to get it. It came with pillows. So we got ridiculous pillows, like the fuzzy one.

Catelin: Insane.

Rich: Our pillows are stupid.

Rich: Um, and of course there's googly eyes on the big fuzzy one. Cause why not? Um, but yeah, and then getting one with a sectional so we could expand it or reconfigure it. Um, and it is super, I wish I'd gotten it for my house. Yeah. Cause it's firm still, like years later being, and we sit on that couch all the time, you know.

Rich: But I love the couch. It's one of my favorite things. I could steal it and bring it to Omaha, but there's no point and you would all revolt.

Catelin: Yeah. There would be a mutiny. Um, I think the other, um, the other amenity that comes up is the, the new, to us. Uh, standup desks or flexible desks, I mean, they are new, um, as well.

Catelin: But those, those were our like end of the year write off last year. And uh, yeah,

Rich: those were December 31st . They really were, um, oh shit, we have a profit. Let's spend some money. . Um, so we bought 12 L-shaped standup desks from autonomous.

Catelin: We'll take our sponsorship money now, please. But

Rich: I think that's what my desk is here, too.

Rich: Yeah. But yeah, so the idea was we wanted something that looked good in the space and not super generic, but we had a couple of people requesting standup desks and honestly, legally from an ADA standpoint, you have to honor that. And so we can get you. Oh yeah. Um, like ergonomically

Catelin: or like, what is the

Rich: So a lot of companies will get you the thing that goes on top of your desk.

Rich: Yeah. Laptop sits on and it just lifts up. I hate those things. They're the bane of my existence. They're also really ugly. use one or see one. Exactly. So the only compromise we had is. Uh, Jesse is a little OCD, so I know he wants to make sure all the desks are at the exact same height at the end of the day.

Rich: He's not, he doesn't care about it during the day, everybody doesn't have to sit and stand together.

Catelin: Jesse, Jesse believes strongly in everything having a place and like that the things should go back to their place when we're, when we're done using them. And I admire that deeply about him because I don't always have it.

Catelin: Yeah. Yeah.

Rich: Everybody's preset. Number one is a neutral height. The. All of the desks go back to, uh, a night, which is great. Um, So I, I think those were pretty good. And there's more space. Like I know Jessica has plants on, a couple of people have plants on their desks now, um, because there are other ones were just rectangular and awkward.

Rich: Yeah.

Catelin: I think workspace, like, like desktop space was an important consideration. And so it took a minute to find something that was going to work for everyone's like,

Rich: I bring up Jesse a lot because he sketches and he like, you know, you've got your computer space, but he wanted to be able to turn and have an empty, like return to be able to sketch on, uh, easily cause he does, he does it with a pencil and paper still.

Rich: He does some of it on an iPad or a tablet, but, um, but yeah, that was a big thing as well. Um, and I think having a space for the desks, cause the original design, I don't even know if you know, this was for glass offices along the windows. Um, and so we would have had, I think it was six glass offices along the windows, something like that.

Rich: And I was like, no, no offices.

Catelin: Interesting.

Rich: Um, and then we, we wouldn't have been able to fit as many people, so we can get 12 people very comfortably in that kind of third of the office, um, the way that it's laid out now. Um, and I kind of like it that way.

Catelin: Yeah.

Rich: It's better.

Catelin: Yeah. Uh, one of the things that I have really loved, um, just in the last like week and a half, I bought a, I bought a walking pad to go under.

Catelin: So like this morning I walked a mile while I caught up my time sheets. Can you believe that? Who is she? According to the treadmill. I don't know if it was actually a mile because I have a weird like stride. I'm much taller than. So maybe it was more than a mile.

Rich: Um. So the other thing, I think, um, music, I was trying to think if we did a podcast on our music, but I don't think we have, I did a culture post on our music and how that works, but I think it's really rare and interesting because we had a guest in our office yesterday.

Rich: I was up in Sioux City. We did our, uh, some, uh, social media. Like stuff with beverages, um, some content production and, um, brought our proofreader who doesn't work with us. She's an independent proofreader. If you need one, we'll happy to recommend her. She's spectacular. And she like, she sat next to me and she was asking me questions like the whole time, like quietly, like, do you like country music?

Rich: Cause we had country music on the speakers. And I'm like, yeah, I'm good with country. Like, it's just whatever I'm like, give it like an hour. It'll change. Um, And then like the space is so cool and comfortable and I'm like, yeah, it's we really did put an effort into it. And how big is this space?

Rich: Because when you pay by the square foot, you know how big your space is But the music anybody can change the music you got to give it a shot whatever's up there Um, you can't like, you know, if somebody puts on pop and you hate pop in one country, you can't change it right away. You've got to let it ride with whatever's going, but if it spends some time, anybody can change the music.

Rich: And we've never. Had a music fight ever. No one. I think the other thing is like

Catelin: We also all have headphones So like I have found in my like, you know last probably two years here Especially since we've moved to the new new space That I focus better if I have my headphones on because it's like the adult version of the folder tent because otherwise I will just spend all day talking to my neighbor.

Catelin: So it's like you can choose your own music or if you want to be in the In the discussion, you just listen to whatever's on and some folks

Rich: just get so focused on what they're doing, that they zone out. Yeah. Megan, when I'm up there is right across from me and I'll say something and she won't respond and I'll be like, Oh, she wants to have her headphones in.

Rich: No, she doesn't. She was just super zoned in on what she was doing and she dials in anything else.

Catelin: I do not have that capability. I, yeah, I don't have the tunnel vision for sure. Um, I, I love this. That's the next question, actually, really, um. into this nicely is, um, rating the overall impact of the space on your productivity.

Catelin: And so, um, I, I resonate with this. Well, I didn't think that I would, but like coming back after the pandemic, it's like, I'm more productive in the office because. I don't have the tunnel vision, so it's even worse at home. And I'm like, Oh, I should load the dishwasher and then do some laundry and then do this other thing.

Catelin: And then I got to answer the. front door because there's a delivery and like, there's all this other stuff that happens at home. And so, um, this response is being in the office can put me in the mindset to be more productive. Um, and then I like this too, if questions arise, we can ask in person instead of waiting for a response in Slack.

Catelin: Yeah,

Rich: I mean that was really to the very first thing about getting an office. Our number one thing through covid was like because we got this office afterward was like We could just not Have an office and what a cost savings that is. Yeah. Yeah, it's a huge cost savings. Yeah um, but overwhelmingly All of you were like no like we like each other and want to get together and want to get out of our houses And so it's like okay like well then for the next 10 years.

Rich: This is where you're coming um I think the other thing about the productivity and one of the things I notice is people talk about like, I can work from a different space. So we have, you know, it's a big open environment, but we have designated spaces. There's the lounge or living room, like where we do our big meetings.

Rich: We've got our couch, we've got a table behind it so we can have a lot of people. We have our long 12 person high top dining table that could actually probably take four more chairs if we really looked at it. Um, where we eat lunch or have big meetings or just sometimes people just stand there and work.

Rich: I've seen that a couple of times. The bar, um, has bar stools and you can work there and there's also power. Um, then we have our little four person conversation square where you can just sit and chat. You can go down to the coffee shop and work down there. They've got couches and things. Um, or you can say, forget it, I need to play.

Rich: And play is an important part of your day. And, uh, do, uh, darts or you can do pinball has been more common. Jessie was playing

Catelin: pinball at lunch today. Skiball

Rich: is coming, I promise. That's so, the original renderings had a skiball, uh, machine and I was just like, Oh my God, that's so great. And I found one, but the price keeps fluctuating so crazy on those things.

Rich: And so I'm waiting for it to fluctuate back down, but it will come at some point. Like I can sit in a chair and work or I can lay on the couch and work or I can lay on the carpet and work if I want to, or there's a smaller room where I can Small room with two chairs that are, um, going to be replaced by a small couch.

Rich: Cause they're, uh, the, the legs are unstable. Uh, much like the rest of us. True. Me too. Uh, yeah. So there's like, you can have privacy, you can have openness, you can be looking out a window. You can not be looking at a window. Yeah. Um, Um, and that was very purposeful and that's where the light fixtures lead, that lend themselves to specific areas.

Rich: Uh, the furniture lends itself to specific areas, but there's still plenty of open space as well.

Catelin: Yeah. Yeah. I love this question. Um, the last question is, what is your favorite part about the office? And I, um, I would say the people that are here as well. Um.

Rich: We did get a new desk. Yeah.

Catelin: Yeah.

Rich: Yeah. It's a big deal.

Rich: It is. The desk transition was a huge deal.

Catelin: Mm hmm. Yeah. What's funny is that, like, we, um. Um, we spent time, like we put them all together. And so it also became like a team building exercise that like, one Friday the desks got delivered and it was like, all right, everybody show up in your, in your workout clothes.

Catelin: Cause we're going to lift some shit up the stairs. And then it was like, Yeah. It's very much an exercise of like, okay, this person is doing this, Jesse is telling us all the instructions because he read everything and like, has the pieces all laid out and like, Yeah. And nobody, like nobody got snippy.

Catelin: Nobody got like, but her, it was like, it was great.

Rich: Yeah. And I think the, the fun thing is whenever we order something big like that, like a vendor, if it's coming on freight or whatever, they're like, so talk to me about the space and the door and blah, blah, blah. And I'm like, Oh, there's a loading dock, right?

Rich: Garage door that opens. And they're like, Oh, Oh, okay. And then I'm like, yeah. And our landlord has a forklift if you need him to like help. And they're like. The one drawback was

Catelin: that we had to haul all of the pieces up the stairs ourselves. So poor Jesse and Riley, like I did a few, I took, like, I carried some of the lighter pieces and I was like, I felt invincible for the first two.

Catelin: And then I did like two more and I was like, Nope, it's

Rich: a lot of shape. And that is the drawback. That is the downside to it. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. But you know, it worked. It worked out. Um, yeah, I think the other thing that people talk about a lot is our space and our culture emerge well and mesh well. Um, like there's enough space where you're not on top of each other, but it's also we're still together and can hang out and chat and you feel kind of unified there.

Rich: Um, yeah. And I think that really speaks to how we function, like we do our separate things, but we also overlap and get in each other's way and hang out and, you know, have fun.

Catelin: Well, and I think the other piece too is that it's just an option, like it's not required. Like we have a fully remote employee in Sioux City, because he feels that that's the best environment for him.

Catelin: And um, I love that. Like we can see each other if we waved out of our windows, but, um, but yeah, that we all have the freedom to. work remotely and Work in the office depending on what what works best for us in that season, too so

Rich: 100 percent so apparently somewhere between like 250 and 275 square feet per person is what Like a studio apartment You guys well when that's if all of us are there, I guess if all 12 of us That's true.

Rich: You guys are usually only five five or six in the office six Yeah. Would be the ones who come regularly. Full. Yeah. So you're at more like 510, 520 square feet per

Catelin: person. That's actually, like a, like 300 square feet is like a dorm room and 500 square feet would be like a studio apartment probably. Right?

Catelin: Does that feel, does that feel about right?

Rich: Okay. So if you had five roommates, you would need a 3000 square foot house to be comfortable. Probably not. I think I'd be on the five roommates section. I

Catelin: know, I was like, that math actually works out about right, depending on how many bathrooms you have. Because I'm like, that's about what our finished home square footage is.

Catelin: And that, I mean, like, we could probably be comfortable with.

Rich: Yeah. And you think about like, you know, whenever I've had roommates, like you just need enough bedrooms and enough bathrooms, like that's kind of, you don't have to shit thing. But then like one of the places I had, I only had one roommate, but we had two living rooms because of the way it was laid out, formal dining room.

Rich: And we're like, we're not going to go buy it. Dining set, like a dinette in the kitchen. It's fine.

Catelin: Yeah. Also you eat on the couch until you have children. Yep.

Rich: Yep. So we had two living rooms and it was great. And like, anytime we had parties, it was so fantastic. Yeah. All right. Well, I, um, I think we've nailed it.

Catelin: I was just like, this is a fun chat. I was, um, I love this. I just, I also like anytime we can talk about how great we are.

Catelin: Pat us on the back. Good job us. We're doing great, but I do think, um, I think it's important for us to acknowledge and celebrate that. And like this, this aspect of our culture does take work and it does take, um, a certain level of vulnerability as well for people to be able to say that doesn't work for me, or this is what does and, and for that to be received effectively by the leadership team.

Catelin: And so I, I don't think it's unwarranted to say good job because like you have done. An incredible job of, of building this culture from the top down. And, and I don't think we celebrate that enough.

Rich: You build culture. Culture usually comes from the bottom up, but I think it's, I think it is a bottom up culture from listening.

Rich: To where things go and just, but it's also somebody has to navigate it and kind of guide it.

Catelin: It's also us being comfortable to show up and say, I don't, I don't feel okay with that X, Y, or Z, and not feeling like we're going to be belittled or degraded or penalized for expressing an opinion. And that comes from the top.

Catelin: So I would

Rich: rather have more opinions than anything. Like even if I don't like 'em, you've come to the right

Catelin: place.

Rich: I mean, and space is expensive, right? Like, you know, compared to your

Catelin: people and your space. Yeah.

Rich: Well, I think for us, it's people then software, then space on the expense. Like

Catelin: interesting.

Rich: Okay.

Rich: Um, well, because we need so much software licenses. licenses and things and they all just get more expensive and they're all monthly now. We

Catelin: love a recurring revenue stream.

Rich: We do. We do. Cause we have recurring bills that we need to pay. Um, but yeah, but space is important. And I think that. Um, hearing this and seeing how everybody, um, kind of reacts.

Rich: And there's some very logical, physical stuff, like I love the desks. I love the couch, but a lot of it is about how the space brings us together and also allows us flexibility. Um, and those are two, two big things for us. So, um, good job, Zach. Thanks for doing a little survey and for everyone, for keeping it quiet from us and not telling us that that's actually

Catelin: the real miracle is that we didn't find out before it really is.

Rich: You must have told everybody, like, don't tell Caitlin and Rich, I'm making this up. Yeah. Did

Zac: you? The only person that wanted to like share it in the Sioux city chat was Megan. Cause she was like, Oh, I can get more people to answer this for you. And I was like, no, we need to keep it a secret so they can react to it.

Zac: But yeah. Oh, that's funny. We

Catelin: could have, we could have, we wouldn't have seen the responses. But I see that's sweet Megan being open and transparent and our little social media workhorse. She's like, Oh no, I can get more people to engage with this watch.

Rich: All right. Well, let's wrap it up. So we will have another episode in two weeks.

Rich: Uh, that's going to be a surprise. I have no idea what it is. Another surprise is nodding at me and it's supposed to be a surprise, apparently, which now I'm terrified.

Catelin: Can't wait. I

Rich: can't wait. That'll be great.

Catelin: Thank you, uh, Rich, for your open hearted leadership, and thank you, audience, for listening along as we talk about how great we are, and, uh, we would love feedback, um, on this or any of our other episodes.

Catelin: You can find our agency at antidote. org. Underscore 71 on the socials, uh, or you can go to antidote71. com. If you have a question you'd like to send our way, you can head to ctapodcast. live to send us a message or. I'm still holding out hope someone will call and leave us a voice message on our hotline at 402 718 9971 And your question will make it into a future episode.

Catelin: I'm talking to you. If you think I'm not talking to you I'm talking to you. Call us and leave us a message.

Rich: I'm still trying to make voicemail happen. Stop it! I haven't engineered it with, uh, who, uh, um, Isn't it all of your aunts who listen to us? My

Catelin: mom's friends from high school. Yeah. And potentially some of my aunts for sure.

Rich: Okay. Uh, Carol, I'm speaking to you and your friends from high school. Call in with a question. Um, and yeah.

Catelin: 402 718 9971.

Rich: Or you could be a tangent part of it and call in with a really funny story about Caitlin.

Catelin: I have no shame. I would love to hear that story. All right.

Rich: All right. We will se