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Diageos Singapore office inspires and connects its people

Diageo's Singapore office inspires and connects its people

 August 14, 2018

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Asia has a rapidly growing, young and urbanized middle-class population and nearly half of the world’s ultra-high net worth individuals are expected to come from Asia by 2020. This makes Asia an exciting growth opportunity for Diageo. With Singapore as the regional headquarters for Asia-Pacific, Diageo's recently renovated office is occupied by a diverse and mobile workforce that service and promote their leading brands across the region. Having built a talented and dynamic workforce, Diageo's philosophy is centered on embracing innovation. "As this is highly dependent on the success of our people, it is our priority to create an environment where everyone feels included and able to perform at their best," Leesa Rawlings, Head of Talent Engagement, APAC, Diageo.

A comfortable and welcoming workplace

Diageo's objective was to create an environment to build meaningful connections between consumers, brands, partners and people. "We therefore set about to design an office that would embody this by bringing to life Diageo’s purpose of “Celebrating Life, Every day, Everywhere”, drawing on elements of the home to create a comfortable and welcoming workplace and to create an environment that would induct and immerse visitors into the exciting bar and spirits scene," comments Leesa. 

"We also wanted to create a flexible workplace reflecting the changes in today’s ways of working. There are no desktop screens, computer or landlines, employees are encouraged to take only the tools they need to complete the work to the office area that best suits the task at hand. Therefore, employees are untethered from a fixed desk and all the stuff that tends to accumulate on them, rather they move through the day and perform various work with typically only a laptop and mobile phone which comes with a certain freedom to choose various different workspaces during the day."

Diageo celebrates diversity every day

"We are particularly proud of having created such a diverse business. In Singapore, 60% of our employees are women," says Leesa. "Globally 40% of our Executive Committee and 50% of our Board are women. Additionally, our office in Singapore is made up of 25 different nationalities. Every day we celebrate our diversity and remain committed to creating an inclusive, collaborative culture that caters to all our employee’s working and social preferences. Premised on our drive to “inspire and connect”, our office is a unique workplace that connects employees to our purpose and our brands, while bringing our people closer together. This has been created through a welcoming and open environment that enables all to see, touch, taste and experience our brands in a fully immersive and engaging way." 

Diageo wanted to create a workplace that offers simpler and more intuitive connections with people, reducing dependency on formal and digital meetings. As a company that champions diversity, the office design also promotes inclusivity and greater collaboration within a fluid space. With its open and accessible layout, the space allows employees to seamlessly meet and mix with each other, customers and partners in the spirit of social exchange and knowledge sharing, nurturing new connections and inspiring new ideas. 

Everyone feels at home at Diageo 

Inspired by the concept of a “house”, the Singpore office seeks to provide an experience with a variety of spaces, each with a different purpose, scale and feel. Emulating how certain rooms within a house are more public, lively and social while others are more quiet and private, these design principles have been incorporated into our spaces known as the Store, the Living Room, the Bar, the Studio, the Study and the Conservatory.  

The Store, which alludes to the experience of a liquor store, features a welcoming reception illuminated by a wall of bottles showcasing a selection of Diageo’s leading brands such as Johnnie Walker, Smirnoff and Guinness. The Living Room is the main artery and social heart of the workplace, providing an open place for casual interactions with colleagues and visitors. The Bar is the focal point of the workplace and it addresses the goal to create “a bar you can work in, and not a bar at work”. 

The Studio is designed as a consciously creative workspace, flooded with natural light to create a bright and open atmosphere. "Our informal and open collaborative settings encourage experimentation and the exchange of ideas," explains Leesa. The Study provides a quiet place for uninterrupted focused work and also features an arrangement of phone booths and quiet rooms. Within the space, the Conservatory overlooks a peaceful roof terrace and city park, offering a quiet retreat for rest, contemplation and rejuvenation. 

Elevating the experience of an office 

"Building on the success of our Johnnie Walker House, a luxury embassy of Scotch whisky, and its established front-of-house spaces, we wanted to elevate the current experience of our office," says Leesa. "This was the motivation behind our incorporation of a world-class bar as the principal feature of our workplace. Providing a natural setting to showcase Diageo’s collection of brands, the Bar also creates a social environment to do business in, allowing us to induct and immerse visitors into the exciting world around us within the buzzing central business district in Singapore." 

To shape the future of work at Diageo, they pride themselves on having a diverse and vibrant workforce to create a stimulating and rewarding working environment where everyone can flourish. In order to do so, it is important for their offices to place a stronger emphasis on environmental and cultural transformation. "Such a focus is principally driven by our mission to “inspire and connect” whilst creating a place for everyone to “feel at home” while “bringing the outside in” to enhance our office experience. This has encouraged productive and progressive workplace behavior at Diageo while igniting a new office culture to inspire innovative and other positive ways of working," concludes Leesa. 

Join the talent pool at Diageo 

Backed by world-leading brands, world-class working environments, multiple awards for inclusion and diversity, and outstanding benefits, Diageo is a top choice for smart women who want to take their career to the next level. Diageo has a presence in more than 180 countries, employing more than 30,000 people worldwide; search and apply for exciting opportunities with Diageo and see where your career will take you. 


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