‘No Door’ Policy Shapes a Local Ad Agency

Alfonso Santaniello is CEO of The Creative Strategy Agency in Springfield, MA

In a corporate world of cubicle farms and water coolers, Alfonso Santaniello is breaking the mold. CEO of The Creative Strategy Agency, Santaniello has taken a different approach to creating a work environment for his employees and clients that fosters collaboration and creativity.

The company specializes in digital and media strategy for businesses in the Pioneer Valley and beyond, and is located in a former 19th century hotel at 1242 Main Street. The building’s worn marble stairs leads to the fourth floor office suite where The Creative Strategy Agency has called home since July. Visitors are immediately greeted by a small foyer which, in lieu of commercial wallpaper, chalkboard paint has been applied to the walls where messages, quotes and working notes are displayed.

Santaniello has a ‘no door’ creative philosophy and has physically
removed the doors from his office.

Chalkboard paint transforms walls into meeting places.

No fabric–lined cubicles or stodgy office furniture fill this wood-floored space, only cozy sitting areas, a spacious conference room and a foosball table in the corner of the main office.

Every surface is a place to brainstorm and share ideas.

“In a creative agency, you need to be able to step away and take a breath,” says Santaniello, who feels like he’s at home in the space. “I couldn’t do that in a traditional office.”

Santaniello didn’t break the bank with designing his new office, either. Furniture and artwork are a hodgepodge of hand-me-downs and Craigslist finds. But it works. The sitting areas are inviting and modern.

“We kept it simple and used what we had. Easy things like removing all the doors in the space. There’s no need to have a closed door in a creative space.”

This space is also where The Creative Strategy Agency will also resume recording and webcasts of the eNews Business Channel, which features interviews with local guests in a talk-show setting. Currently, in the studio room sits a piñata from the company’s third birthday party held in the office last month.

“It’s a really fun place to work,” says newcomer Emily Marino. “At my former job, I had to send an email to someone in the next office. Now it’s easy to just ask them across the room.”

Communication is easier when the atmosphere is relaxed and open.

Random sitting areas are placed throughout the office in attempts to make clients feel comfortable and informal.

For more information about The Creative Agency, please visit them at tcsaonline.com.

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