Inspired Interiors Vol. 03 Ed. 02

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Volume 03 I Edition 02

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Putting People First Choice Bank embraces ‘People First’ ethos, transforming spaces for community and vibrancy

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Designing for Designers InterOffice’s Bismarck showroom seamlessly merges residential and commercial styles

High-quality dining room furniture and more! AS UNIQUE AS YOU ARE

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Planting the Seed FEATURED DESIGNER…P. 16

Meet Kyle

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Putting People First The words “People First” are everywhere at Choice Bank. They’re immortalized in the institution’s core values, uttered in everyday conversation, and emblazoned on coffee mugs, t-shirts, and pens. Recently, Choice Bank brought their People First mentality to life through the transformation of two North Dakota locations. Beyond a mere aesthetic upgrade, the changes were driven by the bank’s exponential growth and the need to accommodate their expanding team in an inviting and purposeful environment. “Since Covid, foot traffic in banks has been down, but our growth has catapulted,” said Shelley Szudera, AVP of Brand and Marketing at Choice Bank. “We had the square footage to accommodate everyone; it was a matter of better utilizing the space.”

Two Locations, One Goal The dual renovation, which included one Choice Bank location on West Fargo’s bustling Sheyenne St. and another on 45th St. in South Fargo, was a collaborative effort. From her own team, Szudera was joined by Chief Banking Officer Jay Lies and Chief Operations Officer Mandy Sheeley, along with

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representatives from the two locations. Lies’s sales prowess, Sheeley’s operational insights, and Szudera’s keen eye for design formed a synergistic cohort that was rounded out by InterOffice’s own Sarah Huckle and Sheila Hanson. “It’s neat that this is a two-location project,” Huckle said. “We worked on both projects pretty much simultaneously. We not only did the furniture, but Sheila was also instrumental in the finish selections for both locations.”

With more than 100 remote employees– nearly 40 percent of their team–Choice Bank emphasized the importance of creating intentional, inviting flex spaces for remote employees visiting the office. MillerKnoll Canvas Workstations and Private Offices were thoughtfully equipped with everything an employee might need, including dongles and spare headphones, as well as accents like drought-resistant plants to ensure a seamless transition for remote workers entering the office.

The renovations also prioritized areas for team members to take a break and connect away from their desks. Recognizing the tendency to get stuck in front of a computer screen, the team created communal spaces using Coact booths and benches from OFS to encourage teammates to unplug and engage in conversation. While creating a sense of community was top-of-mind from the very beginning, there was a shift in aesthetic direction as the project went on. Rather than the warm, earthy tones initially envisioned for the two locations, Szudera suggested a pivot to a brighter, more vibrant palette. “Banks can be dark and intimidating,” Szudera said. “We knew that it was important to capture a happy, inviting environment for our team members and those customers who would be visiting us.”

Photo Credit: Britta Trygstad

With support from InterOffice, the team was able to successfully pivot the entire look without delaying the project timeline. “In a few short meetings, we were able to pivot the whole look from warm and earthy to light and fresh,” Huckle said. “We switched finishes

to a higher contrast of crisp bright white and dark ashy wood tones, along with incorporating pops of their brand colors. We were able to make a few slight tweaks to change the whole feel of the project, without sacrificing much for budget or lead time.”

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A #PeopleFirst Partnership Choice Bank’s People First approach is more than just an internal catchphrase. It’s something they wear on their sleeve–and on their walls–to give anyone who walks through the door an idea of their commitment to customer service.

“We were able to make a few slight tweaks to change the whole feel of the project, without sacrificing much for budget or lead time.” –Sarah Huckle

Collaborating with InterOffice, DIRTT Environmental Solutions, and local artist Brett Lysne, Choice Bank put their People First values front-and-center. Each of the

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four DIRTT panels highlights one of Choice Bank’s core values: “Better the places we live.” “Embrace change and encourage innovation.” “Know when to ask for help and know when to offer help.” “Work hard. Do the right thing. Have a little fun!” In the end, the transformed spaces stand as a testament to the institution’s commitment to its core values and its unwavering dedication to putting People First. With support from InterOffice,

Choice Bank has created two locations that not only accommodate the bank’s growth but also provide a welcoming environment for both employees and customers. “We are very happy with how things turned out. It’s been a really great partnership, and with the experience [InterOffice] gave us, we continue to think of them for our other projects,” Szudera said. “I know they are the best.”

We knew that it was important to capture a happy, inviting environment for our team members and those customers who would be visiting us. — Shelley Szudera VOLUME 03 | EDITION 02 | WINTER 2023 | 7

Photo Credit: Brad Slaubaugh

It makes a big difference when you’re working in an office you really enjoy. — Hannah Schumacher

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Designing for Designers

Photo Credit: Kamryn Hellman

As much as we may try to resist it, we all need a change from time to time. Whether changing hairstyles or changing towns, a refresh feels, well, refreshing. This past summer, our InterOffice showroom in Bismarck, ND was due for a transformation.

“We expanded our showroom, basically doubled it in size,” said Workspace Expert Hannah Schumacher. Seamlessly blending classic designs with contemporary aesthetics, the new Bismarck showroom is ready for customers and employees alike.

It’s more than just a facelift–it’s an opportunity for the showroom to better resonate with clients and showcase the best in residential and office furniture.

Some readers may remember that the last issue of Inspired Interiors featured InterOffice’s newly remodeled Fargo showroom. It’s no coincidence that the Bismarck showroom followed close behind.

Inspired by Fargo

“We wanted to replicate the Fargo showroom to tie in both places,” Schumacher said. “We took a lot of color from the Fargo showroom–a lot of blues and oranges.” The Bismarck showroom doesn’t just juxtapose colors; it blends classic with contemporary and residential with commercial. “There are several pieces that are very recognizable,” said Residential Expert Sheila Hanson. From the newly minted MillerKnoll line (a merger of the legendary Herman Miller and Knoll brands) to the iconic Stickley range, there is truly something for everyone– and the InterOffice staff all have their own favorites. For Hanson, it’s the Stickley chairs.

“We know we did it right. Most of the time, the first thing clients say when they walk in is ‘wow’.” –Kyle Hellman VOLUME VOLUME03 03| EDITION | EDITION02 02| SUMMER | WINTER 2023 | 9

Schumacher takes a different approach to her favorite piece, the Eames Lounge Chair.

With so many customization options, the new showroom feels like a combination of residential furniture and commercial furniture. Now known as a “Resimercial” style, the residential/commercial combo has gained popularity as a way to entice employees back to the office after working from home during the pandemic.

“It’s a walnut finish with a hunter-green mohair,” said Schumacher. “[InterOffice Owner] Aubree Leiser always says it’s our sexiest chair.”

“If the office looks more like home, it helps workers get back to the office,” Hellman said.

And if a customer doesn’t find the perfect piece in-store, the InterOffice crew can work with them to create it. Whether it’s swapping out the style of arm or choosing from more than 1,500 available fabrics, the InterOffice approach puts an emphasis on customization.

As the Fargo InterOffice team learned as they underwent their own transformation, taking yourself on as a client can present its challenges. After all, InterOffice employees are all design experts; it can be challenging to hear and honor all opinions. But with teamwork and mutual respect, the InterOffice team made it work.

“When you sit in them, you can really feel the difference,” Hanson said, and it’s easy to understand why. With over 130 years of experience, Stickley has honed its craft to feature exceptional construction.

“It’s not a typical furniture store where you just point and say ‘I want that one,’” said Workspace Expert Kyle Hellman. “They’re custom-ordered with the details of your choice.”

For Clients & Employees Alike

“I think it’s neat that we respected each other’s opinions,” Hellman said. “Everything just comes together.”

Clients aren’t the only ones who can customize their experience. With new movable Herman Miller OE1 walls, InterOffice employees can create the workspaces they need when they need it–without breaking out a hard hat and a wrecking ball.

Now that the showroom is open, InterOffice is seeing the results firsthand. Before the new space, many folks didn’t know InterOffice existed–or they didn’t know what

InterOffice offered. Now, they can see the space and experience the furniture in person. They can try the couches, touch the desks, and sit on the chairs. When InterOffice opened the new and improved Bismarck showroom on October 19, 2023, employees were impressed with the response from the public.

Photo Credit: Kamryn Hellman

Photo Credit: Brad Slaubaugh

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“We know we did it right,” Hellman said. “Most of the time, the first thing clients say when they walk in is ‘wow’.”

Photo Credit: Brad Slaubaugh

And it’s not just the clients who are happy with the new space. Now that the showroom is open for business, employees can use the same high-quality furniture they offer their clients. “We enjoy being in this space and spending our time in here,” Schumacher said. “It makes a big difference when you’re working in an office you really enjoy.”

Photo Credit: Brad Slaubaugh

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Photo Credit: Brad Slaubaugh


Planting the Seed Planting the seed to an elm tree is a selfless act–it’s very unlikely that we’ll live to see the elm in its full glory. Instead, we plant the seed as hope for the future, knowing that our descendants will sit under its branches. Legacy Financial Partners is a wealth advisory practice with 29 offices in six states. While they operate under the umbrella of Ameriprise Financial Services, LLC., Legacy Financial Partners have earned their own stellar reputation among the wealth management industry, securing a spot on Barron’s 2023 Top 100 Private Wealth Management Teams. Their newest office in Bismarck, ND gives the financial advisors at Legacy Financial Partners the space they need to help their clients secure their financial futures.

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A New Space When entering the new Bismarck office space, one of the first things a person might notice is the stunning hardwood table. The table was crafted by Midwest Millworx, a local woodworker, and made from a nearby American Elm tree, which was felled in 2022. The tree was estimated to be roughly 200 years old.

down, people would have gathered under this tree’s branches seeking shade. Now, they gather around the hardwood table, speaking business.

The tree, and now the advisors who gather around its wood, can teach potential clients a lot about the importance of financial planning. Just as a tree spreads its roots, branches, and leaves as it grows, so do people spread their wealth. Some may choose to invest in the stock market, whereas others may keep their wealth as land or machinery. As the wealth grows and –Jason Kirchmeier spreads, more and more care is needed.

“I sometimes sit back at my desk and reflect on how I have helped people achieve their goals.”

Trees do not spring up overnight. They take time to grow, with roots spreading beneath the ground and branches reaching into the sky. Slowly and surely, they move from seed to sapling to tree, growing and spreading each year. Before it was cut

In their old space, Legacy Financial Partners’ space had become a hodgepodge of mismatched desks and chairs, creating

a sense of chaos. Now, in a sparkling new building, LFP has a cohesive and timeless look. The new space is part of a building owned by Joel Bird, Dave Schlafman, Loren Melvie, and Jason Kirchmeier–all of whom either used to or currently work for Legacy Financial Partners. Kirchmeier knew going into a new space that Bismarck’s Legacy Financial Partners office needed to be something that would work today, tomorrow, and for the next century. “We’ve prepared the office for future growth in that everything looks and feels the same. With pre-filled offices, people can plug in a computer and be ready to go. Other advisors from other locations now have places to work here,” Kirchmeier said.

From Uncoordinated to Uniform With help from InterOffice, Bismarck’s Legacy Financial Partners’ office can withstand the test of decades, all while fitting in with the Ameriprise look: a cool and dark palette based around a deep muted blue. “Ameriprise blue is in our logo and is on our walls. InterOffice put pieces in that would match with that blue,” said Alicia Ripplinger,

a marketing specialist in the Bismarck Legacy Financial Partners office. The pride of the Legacy Financial Partners Bismarck office is the aforementioned table. Tying them to their natural surroundings, the table reminds the workers of their duty to the community. After all, the goal of wealth management is to prepare for the future–yours and your future family members. Now, the advisors can gather around the elm table, sitting in comfortable Exemplis

Hexy chairs. They can discuss the current states of the markets, their funds, and–most importantly–their clients. “At the end of the day, it’s not about money,” Kirchmeier said. “I sometimes sit back at my desk and reflect on how I have helped people achieve their goals.” The desk that Kirchmeier sits back from is a JSI Vision Series desk. Height adjustable with smooth lines, the desk can fit any work environment and any wealth management

You try to do the best job you can to outfit every office and what they’ll need now and five years from now. — Jason Kirchmeier VOLUME 03 | EDITION 02 | WINTER 2023 | 13

advisor. The clients can be comfortable too, sitting in JSI Bourne side chairs. It’s not only the offices that need to be comfortable. As a small business owner, Kirchmeier wants to change the face of wealth management by ensuring the next generation of advisors have a safe and supportive work environment–that means a break room is essential too. Named “the Zen Den” by employees, Legacy Financial Partners’ break room features Exemplis Movi chairs around individual tables and JSI Bourne counter chairs by the main countertop.

Table by: Midwest Millworx

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Like a Dutch Elm standing tall against the wind, with a modern new space,

You want things that stand the test of time. — Jason Kirchmeier Artwork by: Spaces Inc. of Bismarck

Legacy Financial Partners is ready to weather their clients’ financial challenges for generations to come. “You want things that stand the test of time. You try to do the best job you can to outfit every office and what they’ll need now and five years from now,” Kirchmeier said.

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M-TH: 8:00AM - 5:00PM

M-TH: 8:00AM - 5:00PM

F: 8:00AM - 1:00PM

F: 8:00AM - 1:00PM

Phone: (701) 232-3013

Phone: (701) 751-2998

1630 1st Ave N Suite A, Fargo, ND 58102

920 E Front Ave, Bismarck, ND 58504

Shop with ease for in-stock, clearance, or showroom sample pieces

InterOffice Featured Designer:


Years of experience in the industry:

I began designing and selling the Herman Miller Brand on December 5, 1988 B.C. (Before CAD), accumulating 35 years of industry experience.

Areas of design concentration:

State Government - Higher Education - Corporate

Favorite products or furniture pieces: The Herman Miller Aeron Chair (of course) and Herman Miller CAPER Chair

Favorite Pantone color:

Currently: Still Water SW 6223 Pantone 176-11C Tomorrow: Rosemary SW 6187 Pantone 417-C


• Never doubt yourself for spending money on a good chair. • Most people spend more time in an office chair than their own bed.

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