When the CSI Companies, one of the top staffing firms in the US, recently built a new corporate headquarters in Jacksonville, FL, the leadership team was given an opportunity to design a space that fit their culture and delivered an environment where employees can work hard and play hard. A big piece of that culture is a commitment to wellness and fitness, so of course they included a gym in the new building. But unlike most corporations, CSI skipped the multi-station gym machine stuck in a dimly lit room. Instead they built a 5,000 square foot state-of-the-art fitness center that rivals any other in Jacksonville.
The CSI gym includes a separate 700 square foot studio for yoga, hot yoga, and barre classes. The centerpiece of the main gym are two Again Faster Competition Freestanding Rigs providing 10 squat stations and extensions for rope climbs and ring muscle ups. The gym has thousands of pounds of dumbbells, kettlebells, and medicine balls, as well as Concept2 Rowers, BikeErgs, SkiErgs, TrueForm Runners, and an A/V system that displays the daily workout and cranks out tunes.
Of course, when looking to outfit a corporate gym space, there is a lot to consider. One of the first questions corporate executives typically ask is, "will this space actually be used?" At CSI, they didn't have that problem as over 60% of their HQ staff use the gym facility every week. Why? Because it is a top down initiative led by CEO Chris Flakus and Director of Corporate Wellness Nichele McDonald. They believe in a "work hard, play hard" mentality where everyone puts the time in to ensure the company's success, while also making fitness a priority.
Nichele, a CrossFit Level 1 insturctor and certified yoga instructor, has spent her career in corporate wellness and building out gyms. However, her passion is coaching and teaching others to be the best version of themselves through all aspects of wellness.
We were fortunate enough to ask Nichele a few questions about the recent build out and some tips for other companies looking to replicate their success.