Tokyo’s next-generation conference room explores new working styles to foster creativity


Ricoh Co. employees are seen participating in programs to facilitate meditation and socialization at Ricoh Prism, a conference room using sound and video technology, in the Ota district of Tokyo on April 15, 2021 (Mainichi / Takehiko Onishi)

TOKYO – Vivid colors are projected onto a vast white space enveloped in light and sound, creating an exciting experience for all five senses.

In November 2020, large electronics maker Ricoh Co. opened its Ricoh Prism conference room in the company’s next-generation 3L workplace, created as a result of the Ohmori lobby refurbishment as part of the efforts to explore new ways of working.

3L’s plans, named after Ricoh’s founding principles of “The Spirit of Three Loves” of “Love Your Neighbor”, “Love Your Country” and “Love Your Work”, had been underway since 2018, in around the time the company incorporated the practical remote control working. It was mainly young employees who were responsible for the preparations. While they were originally engaged in building an office where staff can work creatively and “spend significant time interacting face to face”, space has grown in importance amidst the spread of teleworking in the coronavirus pandemic.

3L’s facilities include an old gymnasium covered in wall paintings, as well as a bar where people can sit and chat. Its main feature, Ricoh Prism, offers four programs of 15 to 40 minutes each that aim to encourage brainstorming ideas and meditation. A cube-shaped controller and other sensors measure activity data, such as notes made during meetings, breathing and pulse; digital conversions and graphics showing the amount of speech, the degree of relaxation, and other information are projected onto a wall in the space.

It is expected that the boardroom and its technology will serve as a cradle to generate creative ideas for use in planning new services and in marketing.

Haruki Murata, 32, head of the development team, said: “There are times when face-to-face meetings are necessary. It is important to design working styles while balancing face-to-face meetings well with non-face-to-face interactions. . ”

3L can be reserved for the use of third parties outside the company.

(Japanese original by Takehiko Onishi, Photo Group)

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