Ogilvy goes to work on an egg in redesigned ‘Yolk’ HQ

The return to the office is an issue for many companies and their staff, adland not excluded.

Ogilvy UK, now comfortably ensconced in the Sea Containers building overlooking the Thames – after decades of exile in horrible Canary Wharf – is refashioning its space as ‘The Yolk,’ with all-moveable parts by Jackdaw Studios to suit its multifarious purposes. Called ‘The Yolk’ as it’s yellow (obviously) and “where great ideas will be hatched.”

Wonder if the ones sitting on the floor are all chanting “Ommm.”

Jules Chalkley, Ogilvy UK chief executive creative director (there’s another chief among equals) says: “Ogilvy’s people have been incredible during the last 18 months; onboarding new clients, inducting young employees, even remote-directing commercials – all with a bare minimum of time spent in the workplace.

“Nevertheless, there are essential agency activities that don’t work so well over Teams or Zoom or other remote tools – like creative workshops, project kick-offs, training and skills transfer, culture-building or the informal, interactive and social aspects of working that are crucial to any creative business.

“We identified these as ‘lockdown deficits’. The solution: The Yolk!, a fully programmable blueprint for the future of the workplace; a place for collaboration, interaction and sociability, the ‘glue’ that holds a creative business together and enables it to move forward.”

Offices do count, even when they’re mostly empty. Wonder if one reason AMV BBDO star creative Toby Allen is jumping ship to The&Partnership is to escape the Omnicom Southwark Street fortress for the cosier environment of Rathbone Street?

Sea Containers is also WPP HQ. CEO Mark Read will doubtless be popping in for a boiled egg.

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About Stephen Foster

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Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.

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