You Can’t Have Collaboration If You Can’t Concentrate

This generation has really embraced the open floor office space. It’s got a certain buzz and energy to it that closed off offices just can’t provide. It’s been in hopes of providing easier collaboration, accountability, trusting relationships, and even help save on the cost of space and drastic remodeling. With all big changes there are many improvements, but also you have to deal with consequences of your decision. Not everyone has the ability to tune out distractions when they are happening across the floor, or in the cube right next to them. TLNT gives us some shocking statistics on how we are negatively affected with open office spaces:
  • It reduces my productivity: 66 percent;
  • It reduces my efficiency: 77 percent;
  • I make more mistakes: 41 percent;
  • It creates more stress: 80 percent;
  • It diminishes my job satisfaction: 60 percent.
Do you feel like you and your teams are put in that position of struggle? There are a couple of things you should consider before, during, and after these major company and culture changes.
  1. Consider the compromise. If you’re a firm with extreme confidential information, you may need more privacy. If you have a design firm, that needs to constantly have eyes on what each other is doing to make sure the brand comes together, open floors are definitely appropriate.
  2. Know body language. Some of your quieter staff have a harder time speaking up when it’s not the best time to approach them. Warn your more outspoken team members to be aware of personal space—no one wants their workflow to be interrupted and to lose important time.
  3. Ask around. Survey, by conversation, with your people about how the set up is/will work for them. Some may have valid suggestions that are not costly but could really give a little more privacy and needed space to work efficiently.
Don’t let the volume of your decisions drown out what your people need. Paying attention to how people are affected will help you provide the best environment possible for collaboration—people may love the new open floor!

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