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Today we interview Maddy Rutter from TNS Global, our Runner Up Winner of the 2015 Workspace Revolution Contest.

In October 2014 it was announced that our office would be moving to a new location within the same suite at the Merchandise Mart. In the months leading up to the ultimate move, February 2015, I knew this was a great opportunity to be able to start from square one, create a vision and follow through on the design and layout of a space that was perfect for me. I spend so much time within these modular cube walls it was important for me that my unique personality could shine through. Due to the nature of my work as an innovation facilitator it was very important to me to incorporate creative problem solving, a fun twist and a fresh perspective on my new workspace.

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When it was finally time to start moving into the new space I took time to determine what was going to move with me, what wasn’t, and what I wanted to supplement my style with. Fortunately, I had a lot of cool pieces already on my desk and in my apartment that I brought together to create a fun, quirky, and on-trend creative professional ‘look’.
It took most people approximately 53 seconds to move into their new space. Computer hooked up? Check, good to go! Not me, I spent 8 full hours setting up my space (thankfully it was a slow week). And this was after scoping out my new digs at least 10 times and doing visualization techniques and scouring the internet (thanks Buzzfeed) for even more outside inspiration.

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Once I was completely set up almost everyone in the office would stop by and be amazed by what I had done to my space. Even those from other companies that would walk by the aisle would stop and compliment how homey and comfortable my space looked and how it made them smile.

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Since I’ve settled in the inspiration has begun to unofficially spread through parts of our office – colleagues have brought in lamps, garlands, accessories from home and incorporated fabrics into their spaces.

Thrift stores are a huge inspiration to me in my everyday life, so a lot of the items I brought in were locally sourced from the Family Store on Broadway St. in Uptown. One of my favorite items is my coffee mug with dazed animals ascending into the sky while hanging on to heart-shaped balloons.

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My biggest inspiration piece was pulled from the office dumpster when everyone was going through their desks readying for the impending move. (I actually scored an early 90’s SONY clock radio from that dumpster too) It was a decorative hanging shell accessory that you would find in any beach shop along the Carolina coast. I knew I wanted it, but I wasn’t sure what/why or how I was going to use it. After some pondering and the realization I had a replacement lamp adapter at home, voila – my hanging shell lamp was born!

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Because my space was so large I knew I needed something to tie it together and bring a pop of color to the gray carpeting – THANKS IKEA!

I feel so much more motivated to come to work, to be at work and to be within this space. It inspires me and helps show my creative skills and abilities, thorough thought processes and attention to detail to others in the office that might not work with me or my group on a regular basis.

I feel the impact my space makes on other people when they tell me how much they love it, and when I see people asking my advice for decorating tips within their home and office space.

I am on the corner of a very busy aisle with lots of foot traffic of people within my organization and employees of other companies. I like the idea of being able to brighten and inspire other people to think of their cube or office as a reflection of themselves, just as they might think about their home.


We also like the idea of brightening Maddy’s workplace and will work with her on determining the best way to spend her $150 in prize money to continue spreading the inspiration. So, watch this blog for updates on developments in Maddy’s office. Please feel free to share ideas based on what Maddy has already done. Or if you’ve been inspired by her, please share what you’ve done to start your own Workspace Revolution!