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Old 11-21-2013, 07:56 PM
 
Location: Utica, NY
1,912 posts, read 2,548,516 times
Reputation: 3200

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I work in an open office. While I am new to the workforce, I realize that the open office is a fairly new concept.

In theory, it seems like a good idea. The notion of people working in close cooperation and no suffocating cubicles. But in practice and aside from small companies it's a disaster. Here's why:

- Constantly feeling watched. Sometimes I need to stop and take a breather or just think for a second, but I can't because I know someone's watching.

- Low level noise becomes a major distraction from loud typers, gum poppers, excessive talkers. Not even headphones can drown it out

- If you're on the phone, everyone can hear your conversation.

- A greater tendency for cliques to form.

- Being too close to the person next to you is a violation of personal space.

- Constant interruptions from corpwkers or bosses from across the room.

In short, open offices are horrible places for introverts and people with sound sensitivity issues. The office I work in isn't a hotbed of cooperation and harmony, it's a hotbed of stress and people who secretly can't stand one another (you can literally see them fuming).

Does anyone else work in this type of environment? How do you cope?
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Old 11-21-2013, 08:05 PM
 
11,152 posts, read 8,559,848 times
Reputation: 28151
AMEN !!!

I work in an open work space and I HATE IT!! We aren't allowed to wear headphones.

I cope by ignoring everyone and everything around me.
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Old 11-21-2013, 08:17 PM
 
Location: Utica, NY
1,912 posts, read 2,548,516 times
Reputation: 3200
Quote:
Originally Posted by charlygal View Post
AMEN !!!

I work in an open work space and I HATE IT!! We aren't allowed to wear headphones.

I cope by ignoring everyone and everything around me.
No headphones? Omg I would have gone nuts. I can barely drown out the girl next to me and her maniac typing, as if she has a vendetta against her keyboard.
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Old 11-21-2013, 08:28 PM
 
5,721 posts, read 4,630,153 times
Reputation: 4323
I have worked in two of these now it's a horrible horrible setup. I cannot believe how many companies are switching to this now and think it's a good idea. They have no idea how many people totally hate it. Even supervisors and lower level managers hate it. It's one of those things dreamed up in meetings by out of touch upper management that think they're creating some sort of office of the future. It doesn't work at all. It actually causes people to not get as much work done and not get along as well.
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Old 11-21-2013, 08:36 PM
 
26 posts, read 61,119 times
Reputation: 21
I hate, hate, hate open environment. Those who decide it is a great idea are those with offices and their doors alway closed. You put them out in the open environment and they will understand why it is horrible. Give me the corporate world of cubes any time.
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Old 11-21-2013, 08:44 PM
 
Location: NW Penna.
1,758 posts, read 3,184,437 times
Reputation: 1862


Everything old is new again? What is an open office? A return to the old steno pool???
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Old 11-21-2013, 08:47 PM
 
11,152 posts, read 8,559,848 times
Reputation: 28151
I blame Dilbert. That comic was always bad mouthing cubicles. It crept into the public consciousness and management experts began to promote open work spaces.

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Old 11-21-2013, 09:03 PM
 
Location: Midwest
128 posts, read 191,388 times
Reputation: 180
I've worked in multiple open office layouts since I entered the full-time workforce in 1991, right after college. They were always horrid. I much prefer cubicles. You get some sort of privacy.
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Old 11-21-2013, 09:10 PM
 
26 posts, read 61,119 times
Reputation: 21
Privacy is the key. Management has no idea how difficult it is to have a conversation or conference call with a client. I actually planned my calls around when I could get an open conference room.
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Old 11-21-2013, 09:24 PM
 
Location: Florida -
8,767 posts, read 10,857,014 times
Reputation: 16640
Here is an overlooked aspect of the open office 'pool' from a customer perspective.

When I receive a call and am able to hear a host of others talking in the background, I usually hang-up. -- It immediately tells me that I am only one of many low-level calls from someone who is only screening random contacts for someone else. It's kind of like getting 'junk mail.'
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