There’s no question that the physical work environment has a great impact on productivity and employee satisfaction, so picking the right space for your company’s particular needs is no easy task. We’ve been conducting a series of Q&As with industry professionals heading small-to-medium-sized businesses, in an attempt to learn what companies look for when choosing an office space to operate in. After hearing from firms like ParqEx, Orderly Health and All Set, we sat down with a representative at California-based ADG Lighting to find out how the company chose the right office space for its needs and how that process worked out for the team.
Headquartered in Agoura Hills, Calif., ADG Lighting (part of Architectural Detail Group Inc.) is one of the leading lighting companies in the U.S., having designed and manufactured lighting systems for residential properties, hotels and resorts across the globe. Founded back in 2004, the firm is led by Founder & CEO Gerald Olesker, the creative brain behind the collaborative groups derived from Architectural Detail Group: ADG Eco Lighting Products, ADG Lighting, and 20/twenty publishing. Read on to see how Olesker and his team at ADG Lighting found their current office in sunny California.
Q: Tell our readers a little bit about your business: what industry are you in and what services do you provide?
A: Our focus is enhancing the built environment’s needs through positive relationships. If you’ve seen the lighting and ornament work by Gerald Olesker and Joey Gennaro at ADG Lighting, you know it is a sight to see. Many have likened their work to the works of Edward F. Caldwell & Co. The talent of this dynamic duo fill some of the world’s most beautiful spaces. From restaurant commissions for the likes of Spago and the Four Seasons Hotel Bahrain Bay, to the exclusive estates throughout Southern California, their projects represent their multi-faceted talents. So, what happens when the specialty side for designers, homeowners and hoteliers alike is customized? Teams like ADG Lighting take the pen and calipers in hand and begin the design process – because they hold the control with the fabrication that makes the process extra special.
Here at ADG, we take pride in our work and craftsmanship. Our significant designs and inspired collections are developed from Olesker working with some of the finest and most prominent architects, designers and building owners around the globe. His works have been placed into homes designed by Marc Appleton, Gwathmey Siegel, and Robert Stern’s office. Inspired by Michael Berman, Olesker got into the metal furniture industry when Michael suggested to Gerald that he make the MBL Shearboun table for himself. Olesker then began to fulfill orders for Berman and other designers in town for metal furniture. Each fixture and piece of furniture initially comes in a form developed by Olesker within a specific scope for the project. Certainly, while designs are repeated, many of the original inspirations remain some of the most published and seen homes and projects today.
Diversity is a key component of the company’s work. Contrasting designs and fixtures are key to the successful following and modest studio approach by Olesker and Gennaro. With Olesker’s formal education degree in Architecture and Gennaro’s applied hands-on training in Industrial Design, this duo is the 21st-century equivalent of teams like Caldwell and Lossberg, Charles and Ray Eames, and the talents of Taliesen. The team has worked on many private label projects for designers from L.A. to New York. They are currently launching other lines, as well as continuing their custom design and manufactured lighting and furniture projects, and their work can be seen worldwide, from the West Coast all the way to the Middle East.
Q: Where is your office space located and what did you consider when searching for it? Did you use a third-party company?
A: Our office/design studio is located in Agoura Hills, Calif.: close to Malibu and not too far from Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo. We chose the location because it is conveniently just 20 minutes from our factory. Using ANJAC properties and their great facilities around Los Angeles, we are appreciative of being in one of their buildings.
Q: What do you think is the most important thing when searching for office space?
A: Proximity to home and easy for clients to reach us.
Q: What challenges did you encounter in the process of leasing/buying the office space and how did you deal with them?
A: The choice was simple, ANJAC makes the deliverables easy. We have been in several of their buildings.
Q: How do you feel about co-working spaces?
A: We prefer to use co-working spaces. As designers & fabricators, it makes it easier for our team to communicate desk to desk, versus office to office.
Q: What would you recommend to other start-ups looking for office space?
A: Find a great price and location that works for you. We like a corner office with views of the mountains.
Q: Are there any other things you want to share with us? Feel free to add any other information, tips & tricks, or anything else you think start-ups should look out for.
A: Budget is important. Set a strategy and keep to it. It is OK to alter the road map slightly, but if you do, know the outcome each time. At ADG, we do our annual strategy planning under Air Force One at the Reagan Library. Every week, we check our matrix and hold team members accountable to both sales and production numbers. We have done this since our inception, and continue to mark the future of ADG Lighting.