Skift Take

Few companies so far are touring the globe with so-called traveling offices, but they’re about to become the perfect antidote to remote ennui.

Series: Future of Work

Future of Work

As organizations start to embrace distributed work and virtual meetings, the corporate travel and meetings sectors are preparing for change. Read Skift’s ongoing coverage of this shift in business travel behavior through the lens of both brands and consumers.

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Traveling offices, or micro offices, could be the panacea for companies that face remote work challenges, but few corporate travel agencies seem to have caught up so far. The premise is simple. A company shifts the location of its headquarters to a new destination on a regular basis — blending the power of face-to-face interaction with tourism and the excitement of discovering new places to revitalize the workforce. "It’s challenging to keep team members excited, engaged and passionate about a company’s mission," said Martin Studencan, CEO of booking platform NextRetreat. "Gym memberships, office dogs, free beer and other perks can make a small difference, but there is a unique energy and motivation that develops when teams travel and work together in an inspiring environment."

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Rules need to be in place though, as software engineering firm Lazer Technologies is discovering. The Toronto-based company, which acts as a kind of SWAT team to help companies rapidly scale, has been pioneering the concept, with two countries under its belt already. How Did It Get Here? Like many companies, Lazer used to offer a week-long retreat each year before coronavirus struck, opting for large Airbnbs in different destinations. There was a strong office culture too, and it wanted to recreate that in the post-pandemic world. As a result, Lazer now spends one month every quarter in a new location, hiring office space and accommodation, including one week dedicated to vacation time. It's already been to Costa Rica and Uruguay. The traveling office isn't compulsory, but is designed to unite employees in certain hemispheres, for exampl