Tear Down the Walls Between Your Staff Members, Literally

Remember the city of Jericho in the book of Joshua? Remember how the Israelites captured it? They walked around the city for seven days and the walls just crumbled to the ground. We’re seeing a similar experience in how churches approach the design of their administrative space. (OK, more walls coming down than a week’s worth of marching.)

Today, we’re seeing more and more churches desiring their administrative staff workspace to be less rigid and more adaptable. They need their team members to be less isolated and more collaborative. In a sense, they’re tearing down the walls that previously segmented their staff.

Churches want relationship-building areas within their building. To counsel in administrative space, for example, churches need a space that feels like a family room … not an office. Forget the four walls and a door. Bring in couches, a coffee table and a throw rug to set the stage for counseling.

There is also a need for greater mobility with church admin space. More and more administrative staff members are transient nowadays; sometimes working at the church and sometimes working from home. Churches should not have a space design that’s only operable part of the time. Instead, create space that can be easily converted to fit the need, including the technology that’s incorporated.

Some multi-site churches, for example, bring staff from all their locations together once a week. There is less of a need for the large conference room that can only be utilized for these types of meetings. Try to think through how that square footage could be regularly used throughout the week. And so these spaces include mobile seating solutions and multi-use A/V equipment, such as Apple TV.

Not every church we work with elects to tear down the walls of their administrative space. It really needs to match your culture and your specific needs. But we have found this route selected more and more, as churches strive to be the best stewards of their space.   

Previous articleWhat the Internet is Doing to Our Brains
Next articleWhat You Can Never Do, No Matter How Hard You Try
David Wilde
David’s expertise and passion is in designing architecture with an underlying theme of constructability for organizations and ministries. To date, he has been involved in the master planning and architectural design of over 85 projects ranging from 5,000 square feet to 150,000 square feet. Dave has specialized in the design of churches, commercial and residential structures since 1989.