Talking ‘Glocal’ as we open our new warehouse in Canada

Autonomous Autonomous | Jul 11, 2017

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To some, Autonomous may look like another furniture or officeware company, but for us providing the best products is about innovating from the inside out; with our business model, with our company culture, with our approach to ecommerce. When we say ‘we want to help people work smarter’ it starts with being smart about the way we operate. For us, what is crucial, is staying on the pulse of innovation to forge new approaches to all aspects of our company.

In this sense, we identify first and foremost as a tech start-up. We love hackathons as much as design fairs and TechCrunch as much as Dezeen.

It also means that, whilst we have our roots in the US and New York City our vision is transnational.

We have seen how AirBnB, Google and Uber provide solutions that outreach borders and continents. Because finding a place to stay that feels like home or finding affordable and efficient transportation are human problems that need solving for everyone.

The truth is we are all catching up with the way the internet has reshaped global and local landscapes and always discovering new ways to rear that potential for human benefit. As CEO of AirBNB Brian Chesky put it ‘Not being international is like your phone not having email.’

Finding ways to help people work smarter is a global, human task and our customers already span 50 countries. With our standing desk SmartDesks, people are standing at work from Romania to Japan and Brazil to Hong Kong.  

Yet what has been crucial to the success of AirBnb and Uber is their ability to expand with the local in mind. In our article The Offices of Unicorns, we saw how AirBnb’s office in Singapore, London and New York each articulated the cultural character of place. In the article in Forbes entitled ‘How AirBnb expanded to 190 countries by thinking Glocal’, they talk about the importance of translation, word of mouth recommendations and recruiting local content producers to generate a nuanced and authentic voice around their products.

Autonomous has grown extremely fast over the past year and a half. As we go beyond US borders we’re striving for the ‘Glocal’; taking our services into new locales to ensure that we offer the best, prices and services to our local customers.

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