Magazine B No.33 VITRA


Started in 1934 as a shop fitting company, Vitra set a new turning point in the furniture market in 1957 when it acquired the license to produce the Eames Chair from Herman Miller. Since then, the brand has continued to grow through collaboration with contemporary designers selected based on its keen design perspective.

Here’s a story from one of the companies I used to work for: When we were a few hundred workers strong, we all used the same, ordinary chairs. A few of the employees had back problems and wanted to use different chairs, even if they had to pay for it themselves. I introduced one of those people to Herman Miller’s Aeron Chair, which stirred the attention of many other workers. From that small beginning management became convinced they should provide this chair for the whole company, which then grew to over 4000 employees.

For office workers, a chair is the tool they use the most and one that directly affects their health. Chairs are also an important element in office interior design. After I completed an office environment project based on my thoughts about working spaces, many people asked me about ideas for innovative working environments. I asked them about two things: their furniture tastes and budget. Most people are willing to pay a lot for flashy decorations for the ceiling and walls, but not for the furniture. In fact, I believe the design of an office is almost completed simply by selecting good furniture. Most people don’t seem to be aware of the importance of investing in furniture. Instead, furniture is usually the first item considered when cutting costs.

The truth is that it’s hard to get rid of and upgrade all the old furniture as the company grows and the number of workers increases, and so companies end up buying more of the same things. Therefore, a new company needs to be careful when choosing the furniture in its first office. While it may feel like good furniture is too expensive, when you factor in how long the furniture will be used and the future satisfaction of the individual workers and the organization as a whole, good furniture might be the cheapest way to generate the greatest workplace satisfaction and pride.

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