When a bad snowstorm caused their former office’s roof to collapse in 2001, owners Lauren Dixon and Mike Schwabl gathered the whole Dixon Schwabl staff and started collecting ideas for a new office for the marketing firm. Everything was on the table and the ideas that had the most votes would be adopted, provided they could stay within budget.
Just as you would expect from a team of creatives, the ideas were fresh, exciting and entirely different from that of other local offices. A koi pond, a slide between floors, working fireplaces, MacKenzie-Childs decor, outdoor meeting areas, not one but two horses from the Horses on Parade fundraising initiative, electric vehicle charging stations, bright colors throughout — especially the carpet — and temperature control in each office, along with windows that actually open so the team can take in the seasonal smells.
If that sounds like a pipe dream to you, you’re just not as resourceful as Lauren Dixon. She proudly boasts that, when it came time to build the new office in 2002, thanks to some clever budgeting and ingenuity, every single staff idea was adopted. Today in their Victor office, which looks more like a 19th century mansion than a contemporary office, the staff relishes working in a setting they had a hand in creating.
Perhaps Dixon’s favorite aspect of the office is a bell they keep out front with a sign encouraging visitors to ring if they’ve just had a “wow” experience. It rings quite a lot.