If These Walls Could Talk: Creating Places that Rejuvenate Brands
The personal care direct sales market is continually seeking unique ways to connect to customers and increase sales in a highly competitive and constantly evolving market in the digital age. One of the most recognizable brands in global direct sales is Avon, with the “Avon Lady” now wearing the face of a 21st century sales force. As part of a corporate-wide transformational plan to reinvigorate its brand and increase competitiveness, New Avon (formerly Avon North America), sought to update and modernize its call center and training operations in Greater Cincinnati.
After over a century in the beauty industry, Avon found their current space did not live up to their brand image and values and felt an updated design would improve management morale to give them the confidence to advance the company and empower their sales reps – helping expand economic opportunity for women in Greater Cincinnati. The transformation from dark and dreary to bright and bold reflects the company transformation from “old” Avon to New Avon.
“The previous call center was dark and dated with tall panels at the workstations. We wanted the new space to be bright and bold to represent the metamorphosis to New Avon. Workstation panels were lowered to take advantage of the natural light in the space. The lower panels, along with strategically placed huddle spaces, encourage collaboration among team members. Illuminated display shelving was incorporated into the design to showcase the Avon product offering. These displays allow for representatives to see, touch, and smell the products – helping them better serve their customers.”
— Mary Knapp, IIDA – Interior Designer
The KZF Design team provided workplace strategy and programming, followed by full A/E design services, for the relocation of Avon’s Customer Insight Center from Springdale to Blue Ash, OH. The new center is part of a larger plan to make Avon more attractive to beauty entrepreneurs and more accessible to a broader customer base. Critical elements of the plan include expanding recruiting and retaining more representatives, positioning them with the latest marketing techniques and product knowledge to maximize sales.
The design team sought to understand Avon’s current needs and vision for future growth. Strategy sessions included visioning, focus groups on culture and policy, and executive interviews to offer insight into design issues. The design team worked to develop a master plan that would make employees feel better about the work they were performing and improve morale.
The design team prepared design schemes for interior upgrades, restroom expansions, furniture and finish selection, and integration of signature Avon “heritage” pieces from other locations, including the exterior corporate sign from the original Avon headquarters in New York City.
“We believe this new location is reflective of our commitment to provide first rate service to our Avon representatives and customers, while providing our teams with an inspiring and collaborative office environment,” says Scott White, CEO of New Avon.
Design included reception, office and amenity space, and “Avon U,” a world-class training center for Avon representatives, all with a focus on reinforcing Avon’s corporate values of beauty, purpose, and empowerment through its iconic brand.
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