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New agile workspace at IBM encourages teamwork, collaboration

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Senior Location Executive Tory Johnson cuts the ribbon for the agile workspace at IBM Rochester on Wednesday morning. Senior Location Executive Tory Johnson cuts the ribbon for the agile workspace at IBM Rochester on Wednesday morning.
IBM workers mingle together in courtyard at new agile workspace. IBM workers mingle together in courtyard at new agile workspace.
IBM's agile workspace is all about being open, to foster teamwork and collaboration in solving the most challenging problems facing the company. IBM's agile workspace is all about being open, to foster teamwork and collaboration in solving the most challenging problems facing the company.
ROCHESTER, Minn. (FOX 47) -

A project that's been in the works for about 9 months has become a reality, Wednesday was the official grand opening of IBM's agile workspace.

This workspace takes a more open approach to the office, encouraging collaboration.

IBM Rochester is one of many IBM locations around the world introducing this kind of workspace as part of the company's way of working, which emphasizes deep thinking, speed, and teamwork.

"This new workspace is what we're calling a workspace for the 21st century.,” said Senior Location Executive at IBM Rochester, Tory Johnson.

Though employees have been settled in for about a month, Wednesday was the official grand opening of the agile workspace, complete with a ribbon-cutting and social gathering.

However, social gathering is now the “norm” in this agile workspace.

"This gives them the opportunity to work in a more open environment, a more collaborative environment, building teamwork, and really help solving more of the complex problems that we're dealing with in our company today," explained Johnson.

Those problems that Johnson mentioned are a lot different than those of the past.

“Today's problems are more challenging than ever. And what we've found, at IBM is that people working together, collaborating better, sharing of ideas. We say 'none of us are as smart as all of us,' so, this is our ability to tap into that collaboration and really increase our innovation, which we've been proud of in the past, but this is bringing it to a whole new level,” said Johnson.

"Having been with IBM for a long time, I love it. I live the openness, I love the teaming that it builds, and I love the ability to collaborate that it creates for our environment,” said IBM Finance Director Mike Billmeier,

300 cloud and finance employees, veteran and novice, coming together and working to accomplish a universal goal.

"I just think that as a result of moving into this space, that we will see gains in productivity and collaboration and feeling good about where they're working and developing a better community within the organization that we all support," said IBM Operations Assistant Gerry Nonn, who is also a veteran of the company.

An atmosphere almost like a second home.

"We're encouraging creativity, we're encouraging people to customize their workspace. And really make the work environment an inviting place to be,” said Johnson.

With this new agile workspace, not only will productivity increase, but the hope is that bonds among employees will grow even stronger, as well. 

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