The problem of working in an office during the dawn of the Coming Zombie Apocalypse (emphasis on the the - as it will happen) is knowing when the zombie apocalypse is actually starting to happen. Office drones are easily mistaken for zombies, and someone casually chewing on your neck is likely to be the only feeling you're going to experience in your otherwise numb, dreary office day. The office really is the worst place to be during a zombie invasion. People are already tired, stressed, worried about where their next meal is going to come from, and then you lump them together with a horde of flesh-eating ghouls, most of whom probably look like your manager, so therefore perfectly camouflaged in an office environment. The office is quite literally a box of death when in the midst of a zombie crisis.
Should you be a budding-yet-concerned entrepreneur who is worried about the Coming Zombie Apocalypse, the best advice to give in Zombie-Proofing an office is this: don't have an office. Get your staff to work from home, and train them well – both physically and mentally – in preparation of the Coming. Morning exercises such as yoga and aerobics can easily be organised over Skype sessions, and filling your staff's spare time with homework assignments involving medicine, engineering and weapons-handling is likely to be the most useful work-based training you're likely to ever give. Any new business worth its salt should be considering such practices from day one.
However, not all employers are so forward-thinking. Many are still mired in unnecessary, old-hat debates such as “open office v closed office spaces”. Others still cling to the idea that businesses need offices. In such situations, it may be necessary for the workers to organise their own training sessions and the like. Zombie safety and preparedness drills, zombie-specific alarms and morning cardiovascular and martial arts exercises are all excellent ways of ensuring survival in an office full of flesh-eaters.
Should you be the boss in an office block: shame on you. You could have saved many more lives by getting rid of your old-fashioned views on the need for an office and prepared your workers for the Coming. Instead, we'll have to try and zombie-proof your office. Here some measures that you can take:
Realise that there is no “zombie proof” office, only a “zombie resistant” office. Your first thought should be “how can I get out of the office?”. Offices tend to have a lot of flammable material, relatively few resources necessary for survival, and use huge amounts of energy. Roof access is necessary for last-ditch stands - and for being rescued, so it should be readily accessible and easy to find. The roof of the office should be the first port of call during an attack of the undead. Should your office have no roof access, the top floor of the office should suffice
2) Block the stairs
Destroy them if possible. This may be unfortunate for those on the bottom floors but their sacrifice will mean your survival. This leads quite nicely onto the third suggestion...
3) Build a strong army
Separate the weak and sick workers from the strong and fit ones. Sick workers may be carrying Zombie Plague or could pass on illnesses that hurt others' chances of survival. Sick and weak workers should be on the bottom floor, where they can prove to be a meat barricade for the stronger, more important workers on the higher floors. This will give you time to block the stairs.
4) Zombie Response Units
Big groups of people are harder to control and reduce your chances of survival. Separate your workers into small, self-sustaining groups or “cells” that will split up and reconvene in the most secure areas of your office. Give each team a floor plan displaying a variety of escape routes and markings as to where the most secure rooms are. Make sure they study them well.
5) Gather an arsenal
Nothing to do with Arsene Wenger. Have food and weapons caches stored throughout the building. Unfortunately, staplers and sticky tape aren't going to cut it in a zombie apocalypse. Hatchets, machetes and pistols with silencers will. Tinned food and chocolate stored throughout the office will make short- to mid-term survival possible.
6) Enjoy the situation
Unusual advice? Maybe, but let's face it: as soon as you hear reports of the first zombie attacks, you should know that the world has officially ended. Zombie infections increase exponentially and are impossible to stop. Make the best of a bad situation and make a game of zombie-killing. Manic laughing, meditation, casual sex and stimulants (caffeine and alcohol can be found in many offices) may help. Hydroponic gardens can help provide fresh food as well as a hobby to whittle away the end of your days.
Image courtesy of Angels Fancy Dress