SHIFT Boston – A look back as we (literally) move forward

By Catherine Allen (@catherineallen)

If you haven’t heard, the Boston office of SHIFT just completed a move over the weekend. As our last lease came to an end, we found a perfect fit in Newton and this week we’re making it home. There’s a buzz as everyone settles in. I love it.

The New Balance building treated us well – from the building staff, to the cafeteria workers, to the fellow worker bees, it felt like home. It just didn’t always feel like our home. The offices and cubes were spread out; we’re a tight knit bunch. The office was painted cream; SHIFTers embody the phrase “splash of color.” And it was situated by its lonesome; frankly, we need our caffeine fix in the morning, and watering holes in the evening.

I’ve been with SHIFT since we opened our doors in 2003 and have enjoyed watching the Boston office grow and evolve. Each physical office that we occupied along the way holds memories and helped shaped our future.

The first SHIFT Boston office was in a “sweet” location, the Schrafft’s Center in Charlestown. We shared space with another company – and had the pleasure of using all their gray, “inside cubes” – keeping us SHIFTers away from the light. From there, we moved to the Riverbend Office Park in Watertown Square. Red brick walls, clusters of cubes in all shapes and sizes, and funky sunken conference rooms. In summer 2007, we re-located the New Balance building.

SHIFT is known for employee retention – it’s something we’re very proud of. So many of us have worked in many of these homes. However, I was asked if I had any advice to the staff that are experiencing this as a first move. I sure do.

Remember that feeling of going back to school each fall? New desks, new neighbors on your left and right, new opportunities? And you were proud that you were entering a new (more sophisticated) grade.

That’s the mindset I wish for each member of the Boston office, as we unpack our last few crates this week. If you had grown via a promotion in the last office, let that old title go – start day one in Newton bringing that more senior approach to your work. Ask yourself if old routines, old ways of thinking, old habits are even relevant any more. This is a great opportunity to start fresh. It’s about the future – who you want to be in this office and what kind of mark you want to make on the PR and social media worlds.

 “If we did all the things we were capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves.” – Thomas Edison

Good luck to all, and can anyone show me where the coffee maker is?????

A special SHIFT shout-out to a very patient VP of Operations, Paula Finestone, who used her endurance skills in long-distance running to help us move the short distance from Brighton to Newton.

1 Response to “SHIFT Boston – A look back as we (literally) move forward”



  1. 1 The SHIFT Commute « Slice Trackback on March 31, 2011 at 11:30 am
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