SessionM has a bit of farm culture baked into it. Co-founder Lars Albright was at Apple and before that Quattro and m-Qube, mobile adtech startups that have reached mafia status in Boston. But his entrepreneurial experience goes back to Allandale Farm, the last working farm in Boston. His family owns it. And, not that he looks for farming on a résumé, but a handful of his colleagues at SessionM also have farming backgrounds.
Anyway, SessionM does mobile loyalty software for large enterprises. When they moved into offices in Fort Point, the company thought about office design and decoration for the first time. It had built–and invited its employees to build–everything from light fixtures to heavy wooden tables. All have a farmhouse chic kind of appeal that will be familiar if you’ve been out to almost any restaurant built in the past five years.
“I’ve always loved the theme of the farm connections to starting a business, because you’ve got the whole entrepreneurial thing, you’ve got risk, you’ve got a plan and you’ve got to deal with uncertainties,” Albright told me.
Boston interior designer Haley McLane designed the Fort Point space for SessionM. Working for startups is interesting, she said, because of the importance of story and culture. “Being able to take a story and put it into physical space is really an interesting challenge,” she said. “Each company is different and therefore each design challenge is different.”
The thing is, when SessionM moved into their 6,000 square feet in a ground-floor space in Fort Point, they knew it wasn’t going to last. So they made sure to spend money on the things they knew they could take with them. Everything else, from the standing desks to the planters, is basically slapped together from plywood and PVC pipe.
Sure enough, in less than two years they were packing up the valuables for a move to a larger office–18,000 square feet–on a higher floor in a pricier part of the Seaport district. Their 101 employees have been too busy onboarding new clients to do much decorating, VP Marketing Patrick Reynolds told me. (More on that in a week or two, maybe.)