The End Of The Office (As We Know It)

from Enrique Dans

More and more companies seem to be coming round to the idea of the ??open office, although there is still criticism to be found in some quarters. Such criticism usually has to do with a misunderstanding of the open office as a design or an architectural matter, when the issue is related a change in the philosophy of work: if you don’t understand that, your redesign will not work.

Many employees see the idea of ??leaving an office to work in an open space as a loss: they lose their privacy and must now function in plain sight of the world. It is essential to convey to people that the open office means a change in how we conceive of work and that it is not about taking things away, but about offering you the freedom to work from wherever you want. If you need concentration, work at home or wherever suits you. You do not have to go to your office, because your office has become a place where what is essential is the exchange of information, collaboration and social interaction.

More here.

, , ,

38 Responses to The End Of The Office (As We Know It)

  1. Filip Bizek March 10, 2017 at 5:40 pm #

    The end of the office as we know it. According to the author Enrique Dans, more and more companies are favorable of an open office concept. What does it actually mean? Well, imagine an office building where walls and assigned desks do not exist. An employee sits wherever they want at any given time without a cubical dividing him or her from the rest of the co-workers. Perhaps one day you desire to sit next to a window and perhaps some other time you desire to be seated centrally. In a company which adopted the open office concept, you do not have restrictions related to your positioning. However, every idea has a positive and a negative, thus the open office is no different. Therefore, it is pivotal to examine both sides in order to decide whether the benefit exceeds the opportunity cost.

    Let us begin with the positives related to this idea. First and foremost, it does save money for small to big businesses. Hiring extra contractors and architects is not cheap for any owner. Even the simplest wall requires a blue print, materials, and a person executing the plan. Moreover, cubical desks for every employee also has its cost. If this is the case, a company looking to limit the monetary spending on its workers most likely will be satisfied with the open office concept.

    A large factor contributing to company’s success is its ability to provide a healthy environment integrating all the workers together. On the large scale, individual work no longer suffice in any corporation. The collective contribution from the employees enables maximum effectiveness and long- term success. Thus, an open office will undoubtedly answer the demands of this issue. Sitting in the same cubical or room 24/7 most likely prevents an individual from expanding the network within the company apart from the people who are directly linked to his or her job. This would not be the case in the open office, each day you sit in a different area next to different people; therefore, the relationship between the co-workers inevitably increase just like an exponential function. The amount of people you are familiar with would rise from one to fifty in a very short amount of time.

    Nonetheless, there are some justifiable objections to this office structure. Privacy means a lot for most of the people. Don’t we all act different and feel more restricted when people are looking over? For example, a student in a large class will most likely not be as active as in a class where number of students is very low. In my opinion, majority of people value their own little bit of space. It enables them to store their private items and gives them a sense of some kind of ownership in the company. How many of us dream about having a private office when working for a corporation? At some point in my life, I do not want to work in a cubical; I want to have my own office symbolizing my position in a firm. Also, I think that it is a subconscious animal instinct for people to act territorial, thus open office concept may not suit the majority. Perhaps, further introduction of technology is the missing link in complete synchronization among the employees and not the architectural changes.

  2. Benjamin Jaros March 13, 2017 at 1:33 am #

    I have mixed feelings about the open office. First, the reasons I like it are as follows:
    1) It emphasizes the change that is occurring and will continue to occur to the previously considered normal 9-5 work. Through advances in technology, the person who is physically present at the office for the longest number of hours is no longer necessarily the most productive worker. Technology allows the worker to do most of his work at home. Therefore, the workforce is shifting to reflect less necessity for individual offices and more necessity for meetings and interactions with co-workers.
    2) It allows people to focus on doing more individual work at home and less individual work in the office. The more work people can get done at their home the better off they are, and the better off the company is. The worker is better off because they do not physically have to be present in the office at the time the work needs to start. Further, the employer is better off because they do not need to expend the resources to have office space for all of their employees, now their office costs have been shifted to the employee.
    Second, the reasons I dislike the concept of an open office are as follows:
    1) The open office as a new concept could, understandably so, throw off the mojo of some of the most experienced employees. These employees likely, I understand this is a general statement, are resistant to change. However, these are also the company’s greatest assets in terms of human capital, intellectual capability, management, and there presence in large shapes the work place culture of the company. Therefore, the open office risks alienating the most important assets within an organization and could cause some, if not many, to leave. These departures would signal panic not only to shareholders and board members, but to consumers as well. Therefore, a brand new introduction of the open office could cause catastrophe for a company if not done with the full support of the middle-management employees.
    2) The idea of an open office is incompatible with the current education system in place in this country. Therefore, new employees hired directly out of college would simultaneously need to adapt to both working a consistent job and a new way of getting work done. I understand that the current education system could reform and prepare students to work in an open office setting. However, as it currently is, students are being prepared for that kind of a work environment. In addition, as has been previously noted by many, changes in the education system move very slowly. Therefore, the open office would simultaneously anger old employees, new employees, and the educators of those employees.
    I understand the idea behind the open office, but I wonder if it is the best option. The most important question that needs to be asked and was not answered in the article is the following: Is the open office provably, through numbers in comparative out-put, a more productive work environment than cubicle-setting office. If it is, then this article should have said so. Further, if it is not, why bother with the change?

  3. Michelle Pyatnychuk March 13, 2017 at 7:22 am #

    This article is more relevant than ever as we have already learned both from reading this article and others, technology is taking over the workplace and as a result, is putting a change in it as we know it. The typical office setting of closed off offices and conference rooms will eventually disappear because as technology progresses, the need for worker interaction will be more eminent than ever. In at least ten years, we will see that technology will completely overtake the traditional workplace and office setting because there will no longer be a need for such barriers between high level executives and their employees. With technology being at the vast scope that it is, it is more essential now than ever to bring workers and employees together to end the stigma of hierarchy in the workplace because as noted in previous articles, the only two things that separate us from the technological advances that we are seeing are that humans are slower but have the unique ability to socialize. Now that technology has advanced our skills as professionals, it is up to society to hone their communication skills in order to complete the tasks that computers cannot.

    The author Enrique Dans himself even goes so far as to make note that an open concept office space will encourage people to embrace the new atmosphere of this concept because they will realize right away what an open office concept provides for them. Honestly, thinking about those closed off cubicles and closed doors that are in the traditional office environment, it confuses me as to why employees who have worked in such environments their whole lives, mostly on computers or through paperwork, were not allowed to work from home. I feel that the whole point of going into work every day is so people can interact and collaborate on the work they are doing. If you commute into work on a daily basis only to lock yourself in your office or enclose yourself in your cubicle, especially with the technological advances we have now, what is the point of even coming in when you can complete the same job at home? An open concept policy can help those who dread coming into work every day by giving them a chance to communicate and collaborate on problems that are difficult to solve or face alone.

    The entire scope of the working environment is definitely changing and soon, the workplace and the concept of an office as a whole will surely disintegrate because of the technology that would rather promote individual work as opposed to a team effort. As I mentioned before, it is vital that as technology does advance and does endorse an individual work setting, the work force needs to be able to band together and work to complete their tasks together because in the end it truly will be humans against the technology that we have created that will define the future of the working office and the future of human interaction.

  4. Jonathan Cavallone March 16, 2017 at 1:17 pm #

    The way business is done has been evolving very quickly. Twenty years ago, a business opened a storefront, put ads in the local paper, joined a local networking organization and hoped the local customers needed what they had to offer. All that changed with the inception of the Internet. A business is no longer dependent on its local customer base for its survival; it now has a worldwide audience for its goods and services. The Internet has changed not only a business’ customer base, but how a business communicates with its employees, and finds and manages the competition. It took some time for the internet to gain momentum, but now that it is efficient, nearly everyone in the world uses it for business. Because the internet has changed the way business is done, the internet is also changing the way the office is set up in big businesses. According to the article, “Many employees see the idea of leaving an office to work in an open space as a loss: they lose their privacy and must now function in plain sight of the world. It is essential to convey to people that the open office means a change in how we conceive of work and that it is not about taking things away, but about offering you the freedom to work from wherever you want.” Switching from private offices to open workspaces sacrifices privacy often viewed with a negative connotation from employees. However, working in an open space allows all the employees to work with one another and collaborate, sharing ideas and could ultimately lead to more innovative and efficient work habits. On the other side, it could lead to more goofing around and chitchat resulting in less work being done. Workers in the twenty first century have the benefit of being able to work where ever they want. For example, if the employee does not like working in the office setting provided at the company, they can work from home or where ever they can get internet access that they wish. My dad who works for KPMG, works from home about once a month just for his own convince. KPMG provided my dad with all of the materials needed to work from home, including a nice split monitor set up along with all of the software needed. I recently interviewed for an internship over the summer at a brokerage firm known as First Broker’s Securities in Jersey City, and they had an office set up similar to the kind described in this article. The trading floor was organized into sectors; one sector for financials, one for consumer staples, etc. Each sector was very open and the analysts were within an arm’s length of one another. I interviewed with the CFO and he explained to me how the company has been preforming much better and operating more efficiently ever since they changed the layout of the office to be more open. I am excited to start my internship here and experience working in this type of office environment.

  5. hannah deppen March 16, 2017 at 3:51 pm #

    As technology has increased and the ability to work virtually anywhere that has Wi-Fi access, employees have moved away from working in a typical office setting. Having an open space working environment means a change in how we conceive of work from wherever you want. It allows workers to find the environment that gives them the most productivity without confining them to a small cubicle. Many people dislike the idea of this concept because for generations, it has been ingrained in our heads that when we are in an office setting then, the most work is being done. It is false that workers have the highest productivity when working in an office, because typically workers need a creative space to do their work, and offices lack in creativity.
    To successfully open an office space, it is important not to do it halfway. As Dans says, “An open office means an open culture.” I agree with him in that it is important to establish your work fully away from the typical office. It is also important that assigned tables take away from the open office concept. Human nature likes consistency, so switching up where you would usually sit, emphasizes open office concept. College was the first time that I never had to have a seating chart, yet the same people sit in the same spot every class. It is weird that even though we are not confined to a certain spot, we all have gradually and naturally allowed a seating chart to form. I like the idea of an open office space because it takes away a hierarchy. In typical offices, the CEO has a big, fancy office, with the best computer and comfiest chair. In an open space, everyone has the same standard. Since desks are open to anyone, there is no difference in the workspace, despite the level at which each employee is at.
    The author, Dans, does provide a new concept that makes me question on why every office is not run this way. Closed off cubicles, constrict work and I find it difficult that this is the most effective work environment. With an open concept, work will no longer be an individual job. Teamwork has become a standard recently, and having team work that takes place through email and skype, is far less effective than being able to have all team members sit down at one table and get the job done. It is easier for employees to collaborate with each other and it allows them to work together to get the job done. It has been proven true that the best work is done when multiple ideas have been meshed together, resulting in an even better finished product.

  6. Andrew Imbesi March 16, 2017 at 7:48 pm #

    Being the new student in class is not always easy. People often feel concealed, worried, and nervous around new people. Towards the end of the year, it seems like that class has a special clique no other class can have. By the end of the year, that class turns out to be unique. There are certain faces and names that are unforgettable, and the setting is unchangeable.
    Applying the classroom environment to the workplace is more of an idea that should be valued rather than disregarded. In the classroom, I am always open to other people’s ideas and I find that by sharing ideas in the classroom, the overall environment becomes more productive. Rather than keeping ideas to oneself in a cubical, sharing them vocally whether over skype or across a table brings a lot more benefits to the business itself.
    There is a reason why more and more businesses have been abandoning the traditional style of offices. For starters, supplying individual cubicles to each employee creates a cost for each employee. In an open environment, the company pays for its employees as a whole, lowering the cost of maintaining an employee.
    Cost efficiency is not the only benefit to an open environment. In addition, an open environment brings a larger team aspect to the company instead of an individual duty aspect. Companies desire their employees to be dedicated to their business, not their own success.
    The conflict between individual success and company success is perhaps the most concerning issue of any company. Humans battle for individual success, taking humans out of their comfort zones may stir controversy in the workplace. If there is anything that is specifically special to any human, it is their personal space. Forcefully placing employees into open environments may startle them, but is the cost of losing a comfortable employee worth it?
    I argue that it is worth risking an employee’s comfortability to enforce an open and productive workplace. By placing employees into an open workplace, employees will be reluctant to check their phones, and personal information. The same school philosophy applies to all workplaces; phones are to be kept away and silent. I am not saying that employees are childish like teenage students, but placing multiple employees in one room will make an employee think twice about sidetracking off work.
    Additionally, taking employees off their personal devices at their desks opens their world to the people around them. In an open office, you are forced to interact with the people around you. Rather limiting company contacts to a few people, being forced to interact in an open workplace expands copany contacts to many people.
    Overall, I find an open work environment beneficial to any company. As an aspiring entrepreneur, I would prefer to treat my future company with an open environment. Although I find myself to be a creative thinker, I know that I cannot bring all of the eggs to the basket myself. Through a workplace with an open environment, chemistry within any company can reach its fullest potential.

  7. Garrett Palmeri March 16, 2017 at 10:31 pm #

    I have heard about open offices in the past and have been extremely curious about them. Naturally, I was attracted to this article and thought it was a good read. Enrique Dans writes about how traditional offices could be becoming obsolete compared to an open office. Dans then offers some tips on how to properly run an open office and there is much more to it than just allocating non-working areas.
    The first time I had heard about open offices was when I heard Google had been doing it. Employees do their work wherever they please and teamwork is encouraged between the employees. The openness allows employees to think freely without the pressure of a traditional work setting. They can come and go as they please and even take breaks on their own time. Google’s theory is to create an enjoyable environment that promotes happiness in the workplace to make employees want to work. Dans mentions how, “The armchairs and the Play Station is not a cliché…” It is believed that an area to play games and be social with your colleagues is important for promoting efficient work completion.
    Traditional offices are becoming obsolete for one major reason. The advancement of technology allows you to complete remotely any task you need from your home or even a Starbucks. Through services such as a storage cloud, you can access your files from anywhere with an internet connection as well as use Skype to have hold conference meetings over the internet. The access this allows can not be matched as of yet. The expansion of technology allows employees to work in whatever setting they feel comfortable and employers are starting to realize this is important to their employees. This in turn allows for higher and more efficient production.
    Dans warns companies moving towards an open office though. If the transition is carried out incorrectly, you can create results opposite of your intentions. It is recommended you hire a professional to help map out the layout of your open office. You need the professional to study the workflows of the office, its people, and the habits of those people. In doing so, the professional will be able to accurately design the open office. It is so much more than just a furniture rearrangement; the feeling of the room has to be there. The company also must be weary of worrying too much about costs. Some costs are necessary and will provide the feeling employees need. Without the right tools, you cannot expect the employees to perform at their peak.

  8. Carl Hakansson March 17, 2017 at 12:31 am #

    As times change, so do businesses. Businesses are constantly looking to innovate and stay up to date with the latest trends, so that they remain efficient, relevant, and modern. One such aspect of businesses that is transforming is the idea of “open offices”. Open offices are offices where everybody works with everybody – there are no physical office spaces that divide workers. This idea greatly increases collaboration and teamwork. While some may prefer the privacy of a cubicle or office, it is hard to deny that open office spaces are often more efficient than closed cubicles. In open spaces, there is nowhere for workers to hide to avoid doing work. Collaboration is much easier, as all the other workers are sitting next to each other and can easily communicate. A downside to open office spaces is the concentration level. Personally, although I enjoy working with teams to complete group projects, I need complete privacy to complete my own work. Having others around is oftentimes a huge distraction and can become a problem if the employees goof off or interact too much. Open office spaces are becoming increasingly more popular as businesses change from vertical management to horizontal management. Vertical management, which is the traditional form, involves having a hierarchy of bosses and managers, with each level managing the level below it. Horizontal management is the opposite, different workers still have different titles, but every employee, manager, and boss may work together. This is the ultimate form of collaboration. Horizontal management allows for each and every voice to be heard, as opposed to upper management dishing out every single idea. Companies that incorporate horizontal management often use open office spaces.
    I enjoyed that this article explained how to operate an open office space successfully. It explains that for an open office space to work efficiently, the company needs to trust the idea of “open” and trust its organization; in other words, go all in. Oftentimes companies will only go about open office spaces partially, and that causes it to fail. Companies do not always trust their organization and management skills and believe that open office spaces will not work. The key to open offices is to allow collaboration and work to flow freely. The worst thing a company can do is to not buy in to what they are doing. It may be a risk, but believing in what they are doing is key to achieving success.
    In my opinion, open office spaces are a great idea, and they are the future. I think that vertical management and closed office cubicles have their perks, but ultimately horizontal management and open office spaces are the future. Although I believe that closed cubicles and vertical management is superior in the sense of having organization skills and hierarchy, I think that today’s industries are more collaboration-based and therefore are more suited for these types of offices. Collaboration can be an extremely useful tool for a business when used right, and open office setups are the first step towards maximizing collaboration.

  9. Ryan Appello March 17, 2017 at 12:34 am #

    It seems that technology is constantly uprooting out societies traditional way of doing things. As more and more people adopt new forms of it, something like a traditional office seems unnecessary. Years ago, an office was needed because the equipment needed to do work could only be found in an office. However, today, most people carry around something powerful enough to do the work in their pockets. So, the need to go into a traditional office just to do work on a computer isn’t needed as much as it once was. A computer powerful and efficient enough to do this has become affordable enough for more and more people to have one themselves.

    The transition from an office to a more open space is clearly a tough transition for both employees and the companies they work for. As I said, if you need to do work that requires concentration, like work on a computer, you can easily work from home. This makes working for everyone easier. The main thing that this allows is a more collaborative work environment for people when they go into work. Instead of sitting in a small cubicle for hours doing your work and having only an hour or two to collaborate or interact with co-workers, people can work together throughout the entire work day in the open environment.

    I see this potential trend as something extremely interesting, especially because I am someone going into the workforce in the near future. I have also never worked in a traditional office, so it will be interesting to see if the new norm will be that of an open space office. Obviously, the transition to this new form of work space will be extremely difficult. People have been working in this type of environment for their entire lives, so telling them they are going to be working in an entirely different environment that they aren’t comfortable with will surely be met with plenty of resistance. This is a pretty radical change. I believe that even though this change will be a tough one to implement, it is the best option to maximize efficiency as technology continues to progress. Freeing up valuable work time and space to promote effective collaboration between co-workers is simply too important to pass by. If employers see a way to increase productivity, they will pursue it. In an age where tech does more and more of the jobs that once needed people, companies need a way to still utilize its workforce effectively. Instead of taking up work time doing individual work, they would rather workers interact with each other, which increases productivity. The more time that can be used to actually get collaborative, effective work done, the better off the company will be. Interaction between workers while in the workplace will breed a friendlier, productive for everyone. If people are happier, they will surely do better work. Instead of seeing work as a mundane, bleak place where people seem forced to go to, they will see it as a more colorful, productive place that they actually want to go to. On top of this, people will also be more inclined to share information, making everyone’s jobs easier. Collaboration on a project always produces better results in the outcome. When people work together, they are able to share ideas and see things from a different point of view, allowing for the best option to be found. Even if an open workplace seems different and not the norm, it can greatly increase production and efficiency in the workplace, leading to a better experience for both the employer and the company.

  10. Christian Cox March 17, 2017 at 1:12 pm #

    At first glance of this article, I was struck by the title, The End of the Office (as we know it). I first thought that this was the beginning of the end of the workplace. I assumed it was the monumental change that Professor Shannon has warned us about. I am always concerned when I see an article with a name like this one because I have been showed the truth of our future. Time spent with Professor Shannon has contributed to my belief in monumental changes in work life and conspiracies. This article is actually about the change to an open work space. It is just a heely feely idea that if everyone gets to see everyone’s face as they work they will all get along and be more productive. Realistically it is just better for management, because they get to know who is working and who is slacking off. As an employee I think it would suck. I definitely would prefer an office where everyone shuts up and I can just work, but many disagree. The goal of the new office is to create a venter of collaboration, exchange of information, and social interaction between coworkers. This article offers tips for those who wish to create an open space office. Partially doing anything typically yields worse results. Enrique Dans thinks it is a bad idea to have a partial open space work environment, but I think it could be a powerful compromise. Having the majority of workers together, collaborating, exchanging information, and socializing while having some offices around. I think it would create a tight knit group of workers. The open area does not mean everyone’s work in everyone’s business. Human resources still has to be confidential and accountants are not going to be doing payroll on a projector telling everyone what everyone is reeling in. Although in an open office and under that type of work philosophy, why are we so secretive about our individual salaries? For example, let us say worker A made ten percent more than B. A would not want to let B know. A thinks that B will think of them differently and be disgruntled that they make less. However, B will not be mad at A it is not like it is A’s fault. B will get mad at the boss and ask for a raise. Not disclosing salaries to employees is the best form of salary control. No one knows their worth and all the power is in the employer’s hands, which is ideal for employers. However, given that I am more likely to be an employee rather than an employer, power to the employees. I am certain I will inevitably flip flop to other side if circumstances change, but until then we should aim for truly transparent offices. Not just the simple solution of tearing down the walls that surround us. Aim to be truly trusting and respecting employees enough to trust them to understand how a business functions my fellow future employees.

  11. George Tannous March 17, 2017 at 2:16 pm #

    Having an open office seems very practical in a sense that the new environment of an office must be one where team work is encouraged. And for those who do not like team work, one must evolve into one who does prefer it. As Enrique Dans points out, this is not just a change of furniture but something much deeper. This is a change of our entire culture and fundamental ways of thinking. Instead of staying in solitude all day and working independently, technology is forcing people to collaborate more often. I do not think this is bad by any means, but I do think it will be a tough transition for those who prefer working alone. I tend to be this type of person where I get more work done in a more efficient manner when working alone, but unfortunately one has to adjust or be relieved from whatever it is they are doing.
    This article by Enrique Dans suggests to not be comfortable with the previous work cliché. I definitely agree that being comfortable during one’s work day decreases one’s productivity. If someone is on edge due to change, it will likely increase productivity as a result. The entire idea of the new office is intriguing however. I would like to see how much better and more productive a work place becomes if the space is instead open. And for good reason it does make some sense as to why an office should be a strict team work place. With technology, work can be done anywhere. Technology allows one to work from home, school, a friend’s house and almost any other place. The office being a strict team work space seems to make more sense. If one works better alone and in solitude, they can go to work to strictly discuss plans, agendas and strategies. And then they can go home and work on whatever it is they would usually do at the office. I think this has potential to be implemented in a big way.
    In order to combat the coming age where technology is bound to take over thousands of jobs, I think this open office has some potential to keep people working. Technology can do work and so can humans. But the difference is people have the ability to work together and work on a subject plane rather than a linear path. Sharing opinion with one another and giving feedback and discussing ways of producing more profit is something a computer or technology cannot do. This new office design has potential to lean managers and business owners away from putting people out of work and instead seeing the benefits of having a unique team that is able to generate terrific ideas. I see it as a win-win for everybody as this could be a huge factor in creating more jobs. I do not think alone the open office has the potential to totally destroy the idea of technology working instead. But with this idea collaborating with some other ideas this could be a big advancement.

  12. Matt Talarico March 17, 2017 at 4:07 pm #

    While reading this article, and the tips it gives to starting up an “open-office”, the list of things included concerned me. The article makes it seem as if everyone owns everything, which never ends well. What I think a lot of people get out of this article is that with technology becoming ever more influential in how people do business, the need for face-to-face interaction in spaces like an office are becoming unnecessary. While this seems rational, I do not agree.

    Video conferencing with others seems convenient. Both sides do not have to leave the comfort of their office or home, and they get to discuss work. However, this will never have a monopoly over business interactions because people still prefer to have a face-to-face conversation. This is similar to reading a paper book instead of the electronic version of books. Although it may not always be the most efficient method, but there will always be people who prefer paper over electronics, kind of like how there will always be people reading newspapers that are not electronic. Having a conversation in person makes the meeting more personal, instead of strictly business, and sometimes, business executives make decisions based on what kind of person they are dealing with, not the business they offer.

    The idea of not going to the same place every day in order to have an effective open office would not work. People go to the same places every day because it is where they feel comfortable. Students sit in the same seats because it is where they like to sit. If a person is not comfortable where they work, how are they supposed to perform to the best of their ability? In the article, the author makes many assumptions too that are not necessarily true for everyone else. Being the most efficient on paper does not necessarily mean having the best results. They fail to take into account their habits, and human nature. Kind of like communism, its human nature that brings it all down.

  13. Frankie Lisa March 17, 2017 at 5:50 pm #

    Today, many companies are turning away from a traditional style office, and moving towards an open office. An open office is not only a change in the physical layout of the office, but it also changes the culture which the office operates around. Many employees see the idea of an open office as a downgrade from their previous working situation; most employees would rather have his or her own private office. However, I think making the transition to an open office layout will only better the office experience and better the company.
    First, an open office increases the social aspect of the workplace. When stuck in an office, and employee may not speak to any of his or her coworkers for hours on end; the only time they may interact with their coworkers is when they need something work related. However an open office can create more dialogue between employees. I also think this increase in dialogue will strengthen the bond between workers and allow them to be more productive especially with team projects. I also think it will boost employee morale if they are situated next to other employees that they like. A major problem that many companies and offices face is poor communication. As I previously mentioned, an open office will increase the amount of dialogue which occurs, and thus increasing the amount of communication that takes place.
    Another benefit of an open office it can make employees more productive. You may think that the increase in dialogue an open office offers will only make workers less productive, However, this is offset because of the lack of privacy. For example, when in the privacy of an office, an employee may procrastinate or browse the internet on his or her computer. However, in an open workplace, everyone can see everything you do, so no slacking off will go unnoticed by your co-workers.
    Another benefit of an open office is that it makes employees more mobile. In an open office setup, employees should have their own designated work space, but an open office will allow them to change, move and adapt work spaces as necessary. The article also suggested switching from desktops to laptops to make employees more mobile. This switch also allows employees to take their work even when they are not in the office.
    One of the biggest advocates of an open office is Michael Bloomberg. All of the offices for his company Bloomberg are open offices. Even some of the highest executives in his company do not have their own offices. When Michael Bloomberg became mayor of New York City, brought the open office philosophy with him. My father worked for The New York City Department of Education during Bloomberg’s tenure, and he really enjoyed the change in environment that an open office brought. Even the chancellor of schools which is the highest position in the DOE did not have his own office. My father and many of his employees believe an open office improved their work environment.

  14. Robert Seijas March 17, 2017 at 7:02 pm #

    Working from home may seem like the way some offices are moving, but it is actually the way that the entire professional business world is moving as a whole. There are already a large amount of jobs where people commute over the computer and do their work from home or any other location besides an office. In fact more than just jobs are moving to the internet. The entire process of business, from initial contact, to follow up contact, meetings, interview, and even work related conferences are being done online. The work sharing and completion being done online, through sharing documents on channels like google docs or even office 365 is done by virtual teams. These teams complete work without ever having to meet one another and are usually created and disbanded after working on a specific assignment.
    Using virtual teams to complete work is actually a very strong alternative to using employees that meet together. To start, this can allow for a hiring process that looks towards specific skills rather than looking at already existing employees. This can ultimately allow a group that was created for virtual purposes to have better talent and skills than one that would be cobbled together by a physical workplace. These groups do not actually meet most of the time, and would most likely not have incredibly strong connections with one another. This is positive in the sense that workers will not be distracted catching up with one another after a weekend or vacation, but negative in the fact that there may not be high levels of trust and comfortability within the group. Virtual teams do have both positives and negatives, but the positives seemingly outweigh the negatives as this is becoming a larger part of the way that business is done. The prospect of virtual teams replacing physical teams is not the only change to the office environment, as every single process that an office has is going online.
    The processes switching to online are literally everything that an office does. Hiring people is done online on websites such as monster and indeed, interviews are done over skype and video chat platforms, ordering supplies or anything needed like software is done online on sites like amazon or on app stores, and paying employees is being outsourced to technologies that handle payroll, or other services that only need digital interactions to complete this payroll work. Basically, the entire world of business is moving online, not just general offices. Every process is being automated in one way or another, and it is only a matter of time before the entire process is completely moved, even farther than it is currently. The direction that modern business is moving in is one that favors convenience above anything else. Convenient work is fast work, and everything in the modern world is fast. From computers to food, absolutely everything is getting faster than before and there is no reason for the professional business world to go in another direction.

  15. Nick Shervanian March 17, 2017 at 7:19 pm #

    Many companies today are changing the way they do business. An open office system is the new way many companies are doing business. It changes the culture that the office operates in as well as the physical landscape if it. Many employees are not too fond of this new layout, as they would rather have their own office. I think this transition will better the office as a whole company, as well as a better personal experience. An open office increases the social aspect of the workplace. While being stuck in an office, it is a lot harder to interact with the rest of your coworkers. If there is something work related discovered in your cubicle, it is a lot harder to distribute the information. An open office will increase for conversations among coworkers. It will strengthen the bond between the workers in the office. A major problem in society today is the state of the poor communication among companies. An open office will increase the amount of dialogue in the workplace and the amount of proper face-to-face communications. It will also make companies more productive. In an open workplace, everyone can see what you are doing. There is no room to slack off and procrastinate. No slacking will go unnoticed. Michael Bloomberg is a huge advocate of the open office policy. Some of the highest executives in companies do not have their own office. They want to have the most interaction with their employees that they can.

  16. Matthew Radman March 17, 2017 at 7:52 pm #

    The technology revolution has brought many changes to the way people work. Technology companies still stand in most people’s eyes as strange outliers in an American workforce is mostly accustomed to working within a cubicle setting. The headquarters of Google have become a monument to the typical technology office complete with free food, foosball, and an open layout. The Facebook headquarters are similar in that Mark Zuckerberg himself works from an office that is open and accessible to all employees. Eric Schmidt, Chairman of Alphabet, has himself reminisced about going to his office one day to see a programmer already occupying his space. For weeks, he continued to allow it to go on because of Google’s open office policy. These antics seem excessive to most average Americans, and they are extreme in specific ways, but the concept of open and collaborative office spaces have spread through many industries and are being met with opposition equal to optimism.
    In many jobs today, offices have become expendable. Freelancing has and will continue to reach wide adoption, and more people can ever have been enabled to work from the comfort of their homes. The only aspects of offices that still are valuable are the physical joining of employees. Office designers realize that allowing seamless collaboration make remaining office space valuable and productive. Open spaces can be an asset more so than a loss.
    Another trend that goes along with the idea of a more fluid office is modularity. The LinkedIn offices in the Empire State Building in New York City provide a great example of modular office space. The offices feature the main walk area complete with rows of desks and computers. However, the spaces have moveable walls in between to promote control over privacy. Similarly, the office features multiple rooms in which to work. An employee can sit at the desks when they want to collaborate or be around others, but if they need alone time, they can go to the library or sit at many tables throughout the office. The writer mentions a lack of assignments in the workspace; this is also a philosophy adopted by LinkedIn. He also suggests mobility and a lack of paper. Portability and non-assigned spaces promote fluidity and allow employees to navigate around different areas throughout the day. This can reduce boredom and provide the best environments for various work.
    The writer’s final message is that this is not a fad. Many companies are implementing the designs to promote increased productivity as well as less cost. Open spaces can cost up to 50% less than traditional setups. While perhaps a foosball table will not fit office’s needs ever, many industries are shifting to open layouts for a good reason. Besides economics and productivity, often employees are happier working in an open and collaborative office. With so many alternatives to working from within an office, office spaces have the opportunity to transform to fit a modern workforce better. As technology and creativity become the go-to aspects of any company, open, collaborative, and modular work environments will become the norm.

  17. Peter DeSantis March 17, 2017 at 8:28 pm #

    An open office is just what the name insinuates, open. There are no offices for managers or senior supervisors, no cubicles, and no physical structures separating workers. Open offices are spacious with only a bullpen area. This means that there is no office hierarchy; managers work in the same space as those they oversee rather than in a separate office. All employees work side by side at tables or desegregated desks, and there are separate areas for recreation, eating, coffee breaks, conference calls, client meetings, and other office necessities. The idea of the open office has this stigma of only being suitable for the hipster millennials that work for tech startups in Silicon Valley or for the laid-back “creative thought” provoking atmospheres provided by tech giants like Facebook or Google. This is accurate as open office settings are predominantly found in the technology industry, but they are on the rise in all sorts of fields that require an office due to advances in technology, which have made working from places outside of the office possible.

    Enrique Dans, the author of the article, “The End of the Office (as we know it),” offers some excellent in depth advice to anyone who runs a traditional office and is considering reconstructing it into an open office. He includes this one thought close to the end of the article, but I believe it is a crucial component to make this transition. Dans says that before physical renovations can occur, proper “technological architecture” must first be in place. By this, the author means that the office must have up to date networks so that any employee can be reached even if he is not in the office at an assigned desk. If one is to do away with the typical office setup, then the office must be capable of including employees at anytime from anywhere through tools such as video calling. I find this to be insightful advice because some offices may not have entirely current technological instruments.

    Personally, I am not a fan of the idea of an open office. There are definitely certain aspects that I think would make working more enjoyable; however, overall, I do not think that it is a good idea. Some see disposing of the employee caste structure system as I good idea, but I do not. I think workers who have worked their way up to manager and other superior positions deserve a legitimate office room to themselves. They have proven themselves and earned the position entitling them to an increased salary, a personal office, and other perks.

    As an office worker, I would not to work in an open office. I would like having my own designated workspace with my own desk where it would be okay to leave out personal items. I would not like coming in to work each day, having to find a new work area and then at the end of the day, having to clean up all of my belongings because someone different might be there tomorrow. I think it could be beneficial to have all workers out in the open, but I am afraid it would lead to a decrease in productivity. Whenever I study for an exam with a group, half of the time is spent talking and joking around with one another. I have a hard time believing that this would not carry over to the workforce. It is not that I am against coworker comradery; I just think the setup would lead to excessive socializing resulting in a decrease of profits.

    I think that the open office has good intentions, but it would not work as efficiently as the old-fashioned office. I like the idea of having an engaging, cooperative work environment, space and time for leisure, and flexibility of traditional work hours in the office. That being said, I think it would be detrimental to the company because of a decline in productivity and lack of privacy.

  18. Sirina Natarajan March 17, 2017 at 8:43 pm #

    I associate the idea of an open office to a hipster-like start-up company that attributes its success to the Feng Shui of the office. I have always thought they were ill thought, mainly because I always thought a successful company needed a clear hierarchy in order for it to succeed. After reading this article, however, I have a completely different view on the open office. I understand why these start-up companies us the open office. It offers complete translucence and the employees are able to communicate easily with their superiors without the barrier of the ominous “boss door”. It makes more sense for communication and it allows the work day to feel less monotonous throughout the week. This idea needs to be applied correctly, however, because there are many ways this could blow up in the faces of the implementers. I like the idea of everything going paperless because it is eco-friendly, cost-effective and it affords less error as papers will not be lost or spilled on. However, some companies may not be prepared to go completely digital as they have paper files that have never been converted into computer files, so it would take some time to eradicate the papers. Also, some companies cannot go all digital, like car dealerships and other contracts, because the information is sensitive and is in danger of being hacked. Another characteristic of an open office is the different areas so the workers are able to take breaks and meetings in places other than their desk. I like that meetings would be able to remain private and that there would still be a separate place for employees to take breaks, but I fear that the meeting-space would not be private enough or that the break room would be too close to the work area. I like that there are specialists who can help companies achieve this effect as I feel this is a very sensitive concept to implement into a company’s office.
    There may be an initial resistance form the employees because a traditional office format is all they know and to change what was once comfortable for them may incite hostile feelings. It could be very startling for workers to be told one day that the way their office operates is doing a complete 180, but I think it would create a better work environment. These employees would be able to bounce ideas off one another much easier and they would be able to collaborate on projects much more efficiently. Work would feel less structured and more flowing which would incite more creative ideas and would benefit the company greatly. I think more companies should consider the open office as it would prove to do more benefit than harm. It embraces the new age of thinking and propels the company into the future rather than leaving it stuck in the past. However, I do acknowledge that not every office can achieve the complete openness that comes with the open office, but if they are able to, they should certainly try.

  19. Isaiah Allen March 17, 2017 at 8:59 pm #

    When I first read about the idea of an open office, I was not sure how well it would work out. Most people do not like sitting in a cubicle, in front of a computer screen for eight hours straight. Therefore, finding new ways to occupy office space could be a good strategy in order reinvent how people work. In his article, Enrique Dans discusses the future of the office space, and how some companies are starting to turn to an open office design, in order to switch up the atmosphere for employees at work. I personally believe that an open office would place less restraints on workers and allow them to reach their untapped potential. Privacy obviously is harder to find in an open office, but the author did a good job on emphasizing what exactly and open office is and how it would effect workers. Some people believe that they work better when they are in private in a closed off, quiet setting. Open offices reduce the need for employees to physically be in the office, especially if they feel that they can do more efficient work from the confines of their home. Having an open office also reduces the need for paper, so companies can help contribute to protecting the environment while also becoming more tech savvy, which is imperative in today’s business world.
    Traditional offices use memos and faxes in order to get an important message to a widespread group of people. An open office would allow companies to take advantage of the highly advanced technology that we have available to us today. In the article Dans mentioned how sometimes it isn’t safe to leave an important paper document on your desk overnight. Open offices are extremely dependent on technology, so workers would no longer have to worry about accidentally leaving a paper at work. I think that people have definitely become busier over the years, but work still seems to be at the forefront of our minds. We have become great at doing efficient work, while still enjoying our lives away from the office. Work no longer seems to be measured by the amount of time we spend in the office, but our actual contribution to the company, no matter where it done from or how it’s done, as long as it’s done. Some people may view open offices as loosening up the rules, but I don’t find anything wrong with that. Most adults understand that work is not like high school, or even college. There is a lot less room for mistakes and a higher demand for fast, accurate information. Adults also understand that there are rules and they seem to follow them for the most part. This is why workplace rules can be loosened up because anyone who works for a company pretty much know what is expected of them and understand the consequences if they don’t meet those expectations. I think the main goal for implementing an open office structure, is to bring the employees of a company closer together, and get them focused on achieving the same goals. When everyone has their own little corner of the office where they are designated to stay, it makes it harder for companies to stay unified.

  20. Lauren Burbank March 17, 2017 at 8:59 pm #

    I am on the fence about the “open office” concept. My only experience with it thus far is my current job and the office I am trying to transfer to. The Basking Ridge office has been making all of these changes to create an “open office,” but they don’t meet all of the things listed in this article. My skepticism towards this layout is probably because my office and the other location both are “half in.” We don’t have cubicles, upper management isn’t stored away out of our reach, and the floors definitely feel “open.” However, we are assigned where to sit and there is never an option to work from home for better concentration.
    One of the interviews I went on recently involved conversations with directors of three major departments within the retail channel. They expressed some of their concerns with the transition to the “open” design. The main concern was their employees would continuously seek them out for answers to questions that they could find if some research was done, and distract them from their own tasks. I understand that concern but I also see the benefit of a boss being easily accessible to their employees. There is also a lot, and I mean a lot, of papers and binders full of information in every office. We haven’t gotten to a point where every single aspect of our company is digitalized.
    I had to laugh when I got to the part where it said this only works for companies who are okay with letting go of control and tracking where their employees are through out the day. My current role actually sends out a report that shows when an employee is not where they are supposed to be, we call it “lost shrink.” We’re scripted, we’re monitored on everything we do, and I could never imagine my leadership team being okay with not having those reports. However, we have succeeded on virtual meetings, conference calls, and technological ways of communicating. I mean it would be pretty sad if we didn’t since I work for the most well known wireless company in the industry.
    When I was younger, I dreamed of becoming successful enough to have my own office. Yes, like the ones you can see in the show Mad Men. I wanted to be a female, modern day Don Draper. I still like that image. However, I have seen a lot of pictures and read many LinkedIn articles about how beneficial the open office space can be, if done right. I do believe it creates a better atmosphere to inspire creativity and team work, but I also strongly think it requires the right staff for it to be successful. As the author wrote, some people don’t know how to do this and those people should probably stick to what they’re comfortable with.

  21. Daniel Anglim March 22, 2017 at 8:33 am #

    So many things are changing in the world today, people wonder how much longer there is going to be a need for offices. In the article, “End of the Office (as we know it)” by Enrique Dans is interesting and brings up many points about offices. The author states, “Many employees see the idea of leaving an office to work in an open space as a loss: they lose their privacy and must now function in plain sight of the world. It is essential to convey to people that the open office means a change in how we conceive of work and that it is not about taking things away, but about offering you the freedom to work from wherever you want. If you need concentration, work at home or wherever suits you. You do not have to go to your office, because your office has become a place where what is essential is the exchange of information, collaboration and social interaction.” Dans is saying that people are no longer going to rely on the office like they use too. As long as the workspace allows the worker to clearly exchange data and have social interaction then it will be just as viable as an office. The author also tries to give his audience some tips on how to open an office if need be. One of his tips is, “Open offices are not compatible with a culture of control. If you want to monitor the number of hours your employees spend in the office, in an open office model you will be frustrated. And of course, forget about the idea of signing in when entering and leaving. You will know if a person is or is not in the office because there are elements that allow it, but you should not do it to check up on them. Look for other ways to evaluate people’s work.” I really like the point Dans makes here. The days of checking up on peoples hours are over, work should be evaluated by how much a worker is able to put out rather than how much time they put in. Doing things like being a stickler on the amount of exact hours someone works per week is ridiculous, this is not the 1940s anymore. The other day my school, University of Seton Hall University, had a snow day. Most teachers cancel their class on snow days because campus is shutdown. However, my business law class proceeded to operate via Skype Business. This was a great learning experience and really opened by eye as to how people will most likely operate in the future. People no longer have to go to a school or office for social interaction, rather they can use technology to communicate. It seems that offices are going to become an unnecessary business expense that many businesses are going to eliminate. Offices cost so much money and many things are factored into creating a good one. Offices will soon be a thing of the past.

  22. Taylor Salomon March 22, 2017 at 10:06 pm #

    During my internship, I had the opportunity to visit the Clorox Company in Oakland, CA. This company adapted to the open office concept. Although renovations were not complete, Clorox was transitioning into a popular corporate culture. Tons of corporations are taking a step towards a change in the philosophy of work. Many employees see this transition as a loss since privacy is at stake. No one wants to work in plain sight. That is probably because others will be snoopy and pry into their colleagues’ business.
    The main thing others need to take away is open office means a change in how we conceive work and that is not about taking things away. This new innovation offers you freedom to work from wherever you want. It allows flexibility people to work at home or other suitable places. Offices are becoming essential for exchanging information, collaboration, and social interaction.
    This new concept is to my liking. I would love to work at a corporation that allows me to work from home as well as the office’s headquarters. Most just take into account that they give up elements of control, ending the idea that showing up at the office constitutes work, and that whoever spends the most time in the office is necessarily doing the most work. That idea no longer makes sense today. Student Benjamin Jaros briefly talks about this issue as well. He likes changes in the normal 9-5 work. Also, Jaros states “technology allows the worker to do most of his work at home. Therefore, the workforce is shifting to reflect less necessity for individual offices and more necessity for meetings and interactions with co- workers”. In conjunction, student Ryan Appello illustrates this concept allows a more collaborative work environment for people when they go into work. “Instead of sitting in a small cubicle for hours doing your work having only an hour or two to collaborate or interact with co- workers, people can work together throughout the entire work day in the open environment.” I agree with both students and think others won’t mind a shorten working day either.
    The article provides 14 tips if companies are planning on entering an open office space. I am going to highlight the top five. The first piece of advice is to expand the space completely. It is supposed to follow the lines of an open culture. During my internship, I had the chance to visit the Clorox Company in Oakland, CA. They were adapting to the open office concept. At first, colleagues were skeptical of the transition until they enjoyed engaging with colleagues they never spoke to before. This floor plan made communication easy and the work day more productive. Second is to follow the “open” floor plan concept. Some companies switch up colleagues’ work space. They are turning it into a first come first serve desk area. There is no fixed allocation of places. No one should leave anything on their table, so they have to turn to locker space for storage. If you are wondering where meetings are held, don’t worry. Meetings still get treated with privacy in specific spaces. Third includes some sort of smart device such as a laptop or monitored used for working on projects and other assignments. The open office simplifies what people need to bring to and from work. Fourth tip is putting an end to paper. Companies are relying more on the cloud to leave documents. This creates less of a hassle and no one has to carry around bulky binders or bags. Lastly is understanding the open space is not compatible with a culture of control. If companies want to monitor the number of hours employees spend in the office, then they will struggle because no one is signing in and out. Companies have to find other ways to evaluate colleagues’ work.

  23. Jacob Hoelting March 24, 2017 at 2:11 pm #

    Being paid to work from the comfort of your own home has always been the dream. In the new job world working from has become more and more common with every passing day. If not working from offices have switched from the conventional office and cubicle setup to an open office space where you can work anywhere in the office. This design is genius and gives the employees some sort of feeling that they have a choose. By this I mean that an open office style office gives the employees a sense of entitlement that they can work where ever they please and do what they want. Most jobs, to be honest, can be done from the comfort of your own living room. For example, any job connected to the internet. My mother works for the Attorney General of Texas and fills out and decides on crime victim’s compensation and all of her job is done online. If the State of Texas gave her the software needed to do her job she could easily download it at home and work there. If this were to happen they could close her huge office building and get a smaller space for those that need to go into work and thus spending less of the tax payers money on electricity and other things for this building. Working from home would solve a lot of problems such as hating going into work, forgetting something at home, and not being able to go to the gym or workout. These would be easily solved because since you are in your own home you could do whatever you like while working, you do not even have to get dressed if you do not want to. However, not going into work would also make people less social since there would be no co-worker interaction. This would be a problem because everyone needs people in their lives that they can talk to if they want/need to and co-workers have always become close friends and people that genuinely care about each other. A great example of this is in “Workaholics”. The guys in “Workaholics” are the the best of friends that would do anything for each other, but without that office that they go into every single day there would be no interactions such as this. Despite this I am a big supporter of not only open offices, because they actually encourage interaction and social conversation, but I also am a stanch supporter of working from home if it is possible. The modern day office is changing its structure fast and separating itself from the office of our parents and our grandparents. We have become a generation that creates offices that encourage conversation between the CEO and their employees. This is a great idea that further grows industry instead of holding it back and makes the employees feel as if they are a valuable asset to the company and will maybe not dread going into work.

  24. Erin Carunchio March 24, 2017 at 2:12 pm #

    After reading the article, we can now see that technology is really taking over the world. Technology is now taking over the work place. I believe that the overall concept of an “open office” is quite cool. Although there are some negatives, I think it could definitely be done and be the new way an office is set up. To some people, working in an office sounds boring. They think of papers everyone, messy desks, cubicles, boring. This new design of an office can eliminate all of that. This new office will eliminate all paper, which will make the office look less cluttered. Everything is a lot neater on the computer and not on paper. Getting rid of the cubicles will create an actual open environment. This will be better for interaction and hopefully make the space look bigger. Overall with these changes, I think the office will look more inviting. Most people think offices are boring, but with these changes, it may look less of an office and not look not so boring.
    There are some negatives however to this idea. People do not get their own desk. They may cause a problem. Especially if there is more people in the office then desk at a certain time. It can cause chaos and commotion for people trying to find a desk. It is also inconvenient for people who want to leave stuff on a desk overnight. I understand that there will be lockers, but if someone has a lot of stuff, it is easier to just leave it all of the desk. For example, if this office is in New York City and the employee commutes to work every day, It will be easier to leave on the desk. Therefore, if items cannot be left on desk, then lockers for each employee is must in my opinion.
    Overall, I think this new layout of an office can be the new thing. Since technology Is huge in today’s word, I think it is the right time for offices to transition into going paperless. An office can get cluttered very quickly and look very messy. Getting rid of cubicles will allow a lot more space in the office. It will make the office look more open, which is the look this plan is going for. If employees are not allowed to leave items on the desk, then a locker for each employee who needs to keep items overnight Is a must.

  25. John Phillips March 24, 2017 at 3:37 pm #

    The idea of an open office is one that is very intriguing, and something I never even thought could exist. Reading the article, and understanding the argument the author is trying to make, brought me to agree with him. I think this is a very practical concept that could prove to have great success. Having an architectural plan that allows workers to sit at their desks in more of an open forum, would bring great benefits to the company.
    An open office format would create a collaborative, discussion based environment, in which workers can communicate with one another, solve problems, and boost productivity. It would be a model based around goals of maximum efficiency and productivity. Workers would sustain happiness longer throughout the day, as they would not be isolated or stuck in a room by themselves. They would enjoy their environment and communicate with coworkers throughout the day. I believe this I the most important thing in the workplace, having a collaborative environment that allows coworkers to communicate with ease, and work together. This is the first major befit that this model would bring about, collaboration and a more comfortable, friendly work environment.
    The next major befit this model would bring is making people work harder due to a fear of being watched. This befit comes about in the actual office itself, if the person shows up for work, and they are in this open forum, they will always feel like people are watching what they’re doing and in turn will work harder and work smarter. In turn, this will boost overall productivity, and, ore work, with accuracy, will be done. This model is somewhat similar to the tower in the middle of a prison. Now, this may sound weird, but that is not the intention. I simply mean, that in such a layout you don’t know if someone is looking over your shoulder, so you don’t want to get caught slipping. This is how I would be, at least, if I were placed in such a work environment. I would be scared that someone is watching me work, and judging me. So IW would do my best do make sure it is being done properly.
    The final befit is mobility. I this model, people would have the ability to come to work or work from home. I think this would boost productivity due to comfort. People can work whenever and wherever they feel comfortable. This almost guarantees happiness, and allows them to do the best job possible. If I could work from my house I would gladly due so. I believe the ability to choose whether you are going in or not helps a lot too. Of you feel under the weather you can just work rom home. This concept is very interesting a di think it would boost overall productivity.
    In conclusion, I agree with this concept. I think it would prove to boost overall productivity, happiness, and efficiency. The workplace would be much friendlier, and people would actually be inclined to work together. I believe this is the most important thing for any company to have success.

  26. Zion McMillan March 24, 2017 at 4:15 pm #

    Office settings around the country are changing from isolated cubicles to an open work space in an effort to promote the freedom to encourage employees to do work wherever it best suits them. There is some controversy over this technique, arguing that people are being forced to give up their privacy with this technique, but I can assure you that is not the intention. My dad actually runs an office with this style and he has said nothing but positives about it. By working this way there is a strong feeling of collaboration, open-mindedness, and productivity. My dad has said that this style of work has resulted directly in an increase in work output and an overall more positive energy in the workplace.
    I think that it is very important to experiment and try unconventional ways of working. Humans in modern times are looking at a computer screen or phone screen for literally hours a day, so having a large amount of face to face human interaction is important in today’s world. This style also forces employees to collaborate, eliminating the chance of ever not being on the same page. Open work spaces make everyone a little more comfortable and stress the importance of group work, which is becoming more and more the center of what working means today. Very rarely in the 2017 corporate world will you see one person working on one project by themselves in isolation. In today’s day and age everything revolves around how well a team can work together and bounce ideas and dialogue off of one another. Along with the open workspace you will also more often than not find a recreational center. Such a space encourages employees to stop for a moment and take a rest when they are feeling overwhelmed, and reinforces the concept of freedom in the office. In my opinion, the environment that an open workspace creates is nothing but positive and increases happiness, work ethic, collaboration, and independence from your boss.

  27. Nicolas F Carchio March 24, 2017 at 4:55 pm #

    This is classic American middle to upper class work model: A large building with a large enough staff where people do not know each member by name. Cubicles and small spaces in which a person receives relative privacy and simplicity, constantly sitting around a computer screen throughout the rest of the workday. This isolation from others is encouraged and thought that the office space should be for someone to do their work and once it is done, get out and not think about it until tomorrow. The rude awakening that these people must face is that the work place is changing – has changed, and will continue to change.

    The workplace is now moving towards the new Googleesque model of open collaboration and teamwork. This means that employees are put into larger office spaces with others to encourage open dialogues, social interaction and sharing of information throughout the company. It is believed that through the implementation of these things, people will be more productive in the workplace, enjoy what they are doing and actually find satisfaction in their jobs. This also is not entirely scrapping the office, but is moving towards a less necessary office environment, and more of a work based format. This means that there is still work that needs to be done, decisions, meetings etc. in the office, yet the new design as well as the multitude of technological advances allow people to now work from other places in just as an effective manner as they would have in the traditional office. These new technological advances allow many jobs to be preformed from one’s own home, never having to leave to enter the office or having to enter the office 2 or 3 days a week rather than 5 or 6 days in a week. This is a tremendous improvement for people’s lives as it allows workers to be with their families. It could possibly allow for a remedy of Family Leave as it allows employees to work from home, and as long as they get their work done in a timely manner, then it does not matter where the work is done. This provides a large improvement to the old office workplace and allows people to have more flexibility in their schedules. For example, a parent could work from 8am to 3pm at home and still be able to drop off and pick up their children from school without having to leave them in after care. This large improvement will allow more families to have flexibility and offer a new, more personal dynamic to the workplace.

    The new future of the workplace is seeming to be further and further away from an office space and more towards social interaction and working at home, on one’s own time. This idea of flexibility will prove to be very influential in the coming years, giving people more opportunities to work in their stressful and sometimes haphazard situations. These improvements, thus transform the workplace over the use of platforms such as Skype for Business, will allow for people to move away from the traditional meetings in an office to wherever the parties may be through video chats. Overall, this will be very influential in the workplace of the future and will only continue to grow in its strength and effectiveness.

  28. Juan Landin March 24, 2017 at 8:47 pm #

    As the work field evolves, so should the environment in which we work in. Having everyone separated in lots of cubicles across a couple of floors will soon be a thing of the past. A trend we have witnessed is more businesses eliminating the classic cubicle floor design and going with a more open and interactive workplace. It has been said that this type of work place design leads to more interaction between co-workers and it also leads to more ideas created that can help the business.

    Evolution is inevitable, and it happens everywhere, especially in the workplace. Businesses are always looking for new ideas on new products or services that can separate them from their competition. If they cannot find a way to make themselves stand out, then they will not make a lot of money. In order to get the creativity they are looking for they hire employees whose job is to come up with these ideas. Workplace environment has a lot of effect on the amount of creativity that a person can show. If you are stuck in a little cubicle, with no interaction, all day you may not find the last missing piece to your idea that may make it into a reality. This is why a new trend among businesses has been sweeping through and they have been getting rid of the old school cubicles and have made the work place more open. Since the workplace is more open, then co-workers have a chance to interact with one another and maybe share some of their ideas with each other. Who knows, that co-worker that you did not even know worked with you maybe give you that last missing piece to complete your idea. In our society, a wave has come upon it in which everyone has been encouraged to express their creativity and businesses have contributed to that by the re-design of the workplace.

    This can also work in schools. Most of the setup of most classrooms have been the same for decades. Although the materials and facilities have changed, the design is very similar. Putting students behind desks that all look the same can make them feel as if they are not different from any of the other students in the class. This may cause a student to not express his or her creativity. This is why I believe that schools should re-design the way classrooms are setup in order to motivate students to express themselves and hopefully be more successful in school. If it works in the workplace, then why not try it in schools? This way, we give our students a better chance at academic success, which may then translate to more success in the future in whatever job they may acquire.

    In order for this idea to work, you must have a leader who is not very controlling or uptight. The manager, principle, etc. must be able to let the employees or students work and express their creativity. Now, I do not mean let them do whatever they want. I mean that they should allow them to work but with a wide range of freedom. We have all begun to realize that the old school ways of doing things are outdated and need to be updated. It is up to us to make these changes or risk losing productivity doing things the old ways. As technological advances increase, we need to incorporate them into our daily lives in order to keep up with the rest of the world. If not, then we risk falling behind a lot of other countries, technologically, which can have a lot of dangerous risks.

  29. Cameron Collier March 24, 2017 at 9:21 pm #

    The end of the office as we know it. According to the author Enrique Dans, more and more companies are favorable of an open office concept. What does it actually mean? Well, imagine an office building where walls and assigned desks do not exist. An employee sits wherever they want at any given time without a cubical dividing him or her from the rest of the co-workers. This article is more relevant than ever as we have already learned both from reading this article and others, technology is taking over the workplace and as a result, is putting a change in it as we know it. The typical office setting of closed off offices and conference rooms will eventually disappear because as technology progresses, the need for worker interaction will be more eminent than ever. The way business is done has been evolving very quickly. Twenty years ago, a business opened a storefront, put ads in the local paper, joined a local networking organization and hoped the local customers needed what they had to offer. All that changed with the inception of the Internet. A business is no longer dependent on its local customer base for its survival; it now has a worldwide audience for its goods and services. As technology has increased and the ability to work virtually anywhere that has Wi-Fi access, employees have moved away from working in a typical office setting. Having an open space working environment means a change in how we conceive of work from wherever you want. It allows workers to find the environment that gives them the most productivity without confining them to a small cubicle.
    Being the new student in class is not always easy. People often feel concealed, worried, and nervous around new people. Towards the end of the year, it seems like that class has a special clique no other class can have. By the end of the year, that class turns out to be unique. There are certain faces and names that are unforgettable, and the setting is unchangeable. Being paid to work from the comfort of your own home has always been the dream. In the new job world working from has become more and more common with every passing day. If not working from offices have switched from the conventional office and cubicle setup to an open office space where you can work anywhere in the office. This design is genius and gives the employees some sort of feeling that they have a choose. The technology revolution has brought many changes to the way people work. Technology companies still stand in most people’s eyes as strange outliers in an American workforce is mostly accustomed to working within a cubicle setting. The headquarters of Google have become a monument to the typical technology office complete with free food, foosball, and an open layout. The idea of an open office is one that is very intriguing, and something I never even thought could exist. Reading the article, and understanding the argument the author is trying to make, brought me to agree with him. I think this is a very practical concept that could prove to have great success. Having an architectural plan that allows workers to sit at their desks in more of an open forum, would bring great benefits to the company. The workplace is now moving towards the new Googleesque model of open collaboration and teamwork. This means that employees are put into larger office spaces with others to encourage open dialogues, social interaction and sharing of information throughout the company. It is believed that through the implementation of these things, people will be more productive in the workplace, enjoy what they are doing and actually find satisfaction in their jobs.

  30. Jiaqi Ma March 30, 2017 at 12:19 am #

    Workers must have this experience, which is they come up with a fabulous idea in their private time. They just have to write down it right now. They cannot wait until work time because they probably will forget. Open office could solve this troubled thing. From the opening paragraph, Enrique Dans revealed that there is a new trend that open offices will replace traditional office model. It is not only a trend for public to share open offices replacement of the old ones. But also it is a necessary revolution to adapt the movement of the society. Just like Enrique said: “It is essential to convey to people that the open office means a change in how we conceive of work and that it is not about taking things away, but about offering you the freedom to work from wherever you want.” You will not be limited in certain time and a certain place.

    However, it is true that the open offices facing too many challenges that need to be solved. It implies that many elements of control are giving up. The division of labor is not clear. The people who are not likely working in an open office will spend more time. Therefore, Enrique mentioned some tips for this issue. Firstly, all or nothing. If you really wish to make an open office, you have to get all your employees’ –above a certain level—allowance. Because the open offices are very different from the traditional office, you must have the confidence to accept it: whoever arrives sites and no matter where they want, there are no “their” places. There is no fixed allocation personally; “no one should leave anything on your table”, mentioned by the Enrique. For those valuable issues, filters and good habits such as leaving it locked when you get up for coffee should be developed. There should have some safety measures for people in case of their keep eyes on it all the time. Secondly, because of the less privacy in the open offices, the employees would not be able to do their individual work at the working time comparing with traditional working time (normal 9am-5pm). In my view, this will greatly enhance the working efficiently. When we are working, our individual things easily distract us.

    Though the author has a positive attitude on this plan, I reckon that this is a great idea. However, it is hard to deny that they will be many problems when we changed to open office. As far as I know, the growing number of people focusses on privacy. It is not easy to get their permission to let them sacrifice private matters to adapt the new trend. Besides, the supporter, Enrique, did not bring up some constructive suggestions about it. Like what Benjamin Jaros said in his comments: “Is the open office probably, though numbers in comparative output, a more productive work environment than the cubicle-setting office.” If it is, then this article should say no. Further, if it is not, why we should bother with the change? Yes, based on so many problems to be raised and there are no effective solutions come up with. Therefore, my opinion biased is maintaining the current status.

  31. Evan Costello March 31, 2017 at 1:41 pm #

    In regards to the idea of an open office, where cubicles are a thing of the past and workers come and go as they please as long as their work is productive, I do not whole heartedly agree, but I do consider it to be better than the strict cubicle office style with little freedom. Change is not always a bad thing, even in an office setting. The day in day out routine of the nine to five work day schedule can be so routine and cookie cutter that an average worker shows less than minimal interest in their work. A free flowing work environment might inspire those to keep to their work in their own space that does not reflect and ice cube tray. Secondly, an open office might make employees feel as though they are working at home. Those who work at home still have ample work, a superior to report to, and a schedule to abide by, but without having to constantly be in a cramped cubicle, one might feel as though they are at home without actually being there. Open offices provoke a less confining and freer environment. However, some of the negatives of an open office are that open offices can easily be taken advantage of. For example, without a defined work space and a free schedule, employees could come into the office and simply not do work. They would relax in their work space and socialize without having accomplished anything. Having said that, an argument could be made in the same regard to a cubicle style office. For example, my mother works in a small office that works in insurance, and sometimes I will text her and call her during the day. When she comes home, she tells my dad and I how her day was and how she looks up places we should go on vacation, all the while I am thinking about how long she usually takes to do that. I know for a fact she wastes plenty of time at work because frankly, working strictly nine to five day in and day out in a cubicle would probably give her cabin fever. This idea of an open office is by and large unorthodox and I would be surprised if the everyday cubicle style office setting could adapt. For example, jobs with relatively young workers could easily adapt to an open office. Places based in Palo Alto, Cambridge, and all minor cities surrounding prestigious colleges with young bright workers could easily handle and adapt positively to an open office. Another example of firms that could adapt well to an open office are journalism and communication firms like the alternative press or the New York times could adapt very well to an open office in my opinion. Writers of articles and papers and what not would work better in a free environment whereas accountants, businessman, lawyers and jobs of that nature would be far too distracted. I know that when I am employed (god willing) I will have to get used to working in a confined space, more than likely a cubicle.

  32. Erin Chan March 31, 2017 at 3:21 pm #

    Open office is a spacious office with good space, good light, wide field of vision, easy to communicate, and easy to control. It does not have a personal office. The materials of the composite workplace are rich and colorful. The level of office staff is not primarily determined by the location of the office, it does not have a traditional leadership seat, but with the task to determine the location. People can feel open office as a good thing and it is design for some purpose. First, it will reduce construction costs and energy costs. The open design provides greater flexibility and reduces the cost of energy costs such as lighting. Second, to improve the office space utilization, saving the area, so that limited space can accommodate more employees. Third, to reduce the exchange of psychological barriers, easy to communicate, open design, managers have more opportunities and staff contact, easy to deepen communication with employees. Forth, easier to manage and supervise employees. Remove the walls, managers can more directly observe the behavior of employees to understand their work conditions. THe last, can share office equipment, the formation of centralized management and services. All of this can improve the effciency of the company.

    However, it will lack the opportunity for a separate office. Some management staff complained that open offices deprived them of their right to work alone and felt reduced their identity and status. Easy to supervise the boss is an advantage, but easy to be regulated, then the staff is probably a pain, and employees need privacy is not necessarily to lazy shopping, and sometimes there are more confidential work to deal with the content. Difficult to focus on work. Some employees feel that working in a large office area with many people, easily distracting, or feel that their every move is under the supervision of others, resulting in discomfort. The open design will make the conversation next to the staff, the phone ringing, the noise of the office equipment, the office area is too loud. Larger noise can interfere with employee’s attention and reduce efficiency. Staff too close, shared telephone and fax and other office equipment, but also easily lead to mutual friction and unhappy. Open the layout will also make the epidemic of influenza and other diseases spread among employees. In addition, the staff too much mental stress, blood pressure and other health problems, but also with the open office have a certain relationship. At the same time, open office is difficult to keep. Open office design is not suitable for accounting and legal departments to work effectively, because these departments need a high degree of confidentiality.

    For the younger generation of employees, yes, the elimination of physical barriers in work helps to help with the work atmosphere. But sad that this benefit did not last for too long More discussion, collaboration, means more distraction, and finally the vicious cycle of declining productivity. The original idea of ??good practice, and finally evolved into more and more young generation, asked to return to the traditional office environment, at least the noise will be less, the discussion will not interrupt the degree of attention.

  33. Derek Luckman March 31, 2017 at 8:31 pm #

    In my opinion, anything that has to do with work, office space, or office environment is completely preference. For some people, they feel caged on in a cubicle and separated, and this could hold them back focusing. For people like myself, I prefer to work in complete silence, however I can work under any circumstances because I am used to chaos growing up in such a full house. Regardless to how you may feel on the matter however, it is pretty funny to see how situations our minds perceive situations and work accordingly. What I mean by this, in relation to the particular article is that, just because our minds perceives the space as being more open, it sends a signal to us that there is more freedom, thus changing our working habits. Closed off offices do allow for more privacy but also create a completely different type of working environment as opposed to an open space floor plan. If you look at creative minds, you will realize that you have to allow them the freedom and range of motion to be free, to be creative, as it my thought that people are not meant to be in isolation. Although I do like working alone, I like having large groups of people around me and being engaged. This can be demonstrated by Google’s employee system, where they are given open space, and plenty of recreational activities to pass the time while at work. This allows for all those creative minds working at Google to not be so tense and isolated and feel “trapped” at work. This is important, especially in the workplace because this is when your mind is at its best, when it’s able to roam and look at things from different perspectives. I remember being asked to work at another branch for my bank to cover someone else’s shift. When I arrived at the new branch, it was full of windows, the sunlight was peering in, and the floor plan was completely open. I remember feeling totally different about work that day. It put a sense of joy and freedom and made me happier to be at work and my smile that much bigger for the customers to see. The point of what I am saying is that just the change of environment from being in a small confined space, to an open interactive space, changed my whole perspective and work that day, and made me much happier to be there. Even when I went home shopping with my girlfriend, we both agreed the floor plan has to be an open one, where the rooms flow, one right into the other. This is because, it is my belief that humans aren’t mean to be closed off and isolated. We are supposed to work together, to construct together, and to interact with each other. Not only does it promote a more positive mood, thus a more positive work environment, but it makes the work seem a little bit less like work.

  34. Anthony Laverde April 24, 2017 at 10:14 pm #

    I give an immense amount of credit to millennials for being such disruptors, and for completely reinventing virtually everything that generations before them created, established and followed for years. They have reinvented the way we travel (car and plane) our options for travel accommodations, and our ability to connect and communicate with one another. Despite being around this new type of office space described in the article above, I had never directly associated that with millennials; however, it is another innovation that occurred due to their constant desire to create their own path, while also increasing productivity and accessibility. All of these groundbreaking services, like Facebook, Uber, and AriBnB, have contributed to the change in society and the way we do things on a daily basis. It blows my mind, however, that while these innovators were in the process of creating these various services, they were also unconsciously changing the process of development itself. We have had the privilege, and extreme advantage of growing up in a world where the internet was widely and easily accessible. This, no doubt, influenced us to gravitate towards ease, because the internet made doing so many things much easier. Workplaces benefited from this immensely, and it eventually led to the switch from paper to computer. (again, the article refers to this) Office spaces began opening up, removing cubicles of solitude, when we began sharing documents and working on them on collaborative platforms like Google Docs and dropbox. This collaborative effort made it necessary that we can easily communicate with one another, erasing the need for confined work spaces.

    Eventually, this open space become the norm, and an absolute necessity in order to properly communicate, and develop products as you go. The open concept of a work space encourages collaboration and free thinking. So much so, that entrepreneurial start up incubators all across the country have adopted this method of collaboration. Incubators were created in order to aid entrepreneurs who were looking for extra tools, money, and resources to develop a product or service. Incubators like Techstars, Round tables, DreamIt Ventures, and many more have even taken the concept a step further. They have taken multiple start ups, and grouped them together in the same space, taking advantage of the open concept. This has not only increased the amount of open communication possible, but it has made talking to one another a virtual necessity and allowed for even more concepts and ideas to flow freely. Many times, there will be no direct correlation between the start ups; they will differ from businesses in various different industries. This serves a specific purpose of allowing outside opinions and suggestions to flow. The concept of an open work space is the future of offices because it promotes teamwork and ensures innovation is occurring at a productive rate. In a time where communication is so easy, and collaborative platforms are utilized as frequently as they are, it is important that we adapt to the times. Incubators are at the forefront of this, setting precedent for various other new start ups to expect working in that type of environment. With more and more advancements in technology and society, we cannot stick to the same development methods, and open work spaces are a breath of needed fresh air.

  35. William Stuck April 28, 2017 at 12:17 pm #

    Work is no longer done exclusively at work, which is weird to say. However, our world is more connected than ever and that means that you can do your job from almost anywhere. It is possible to do what you need to do on your computer and sometimes even your phone. Because of this we are starting to think of the office differently. No longer is it a place to get your work done, you can do that anywhere. To keep the office as we know it relevant, we have to think of and use it in a different way. The modern office should be a place full of interaction, where ideas and information can flow freely. I understand that you could quickly express anything through email and other platforms like slack. But real face to face interaction is far better. I think that a functional office environment can build comradery and trust within a workforce. I notice the same kind of thing in college. You may not have much in common with someone, but the shared experience of something like being in a difficult class can put you on good terms. It’s not like these people are your best friends, but you have no problem sharing ideas and maybe a little humor. For these reasons, the article says that an open floor space is ideal for the modern office. It says that even executive level employees should be removed from their offices. I disagree with some of this. An open floor plan is a great idea, but some small barriers should be in place to provide a small amount of privacy as well as a sense of personal space. Maybe barriers that are around neck level when you are sitting. I think that would give a good amount of privacy, but you can still look up and talk to your co-workers. Rows of cubicles are definitely out though, they seem to isolate you so much. I don’t agree that offices should be eliminated, though. A large, private office is something that you have to work for, a symbol of rank and accomplishment, something to be proud of. You can still easily turn it into a welcome space. Simply leaving the door open or having a not so serious decoration can show people that they’re welcome to come in and speak their mind at any time. Your relationship with your boss is far more important than the nature of their office space. My father owns a business, and because of that I was able to observe a functioning office environment from a young age. People were usually always talking and there was no sense of someone being the “boss”. My father had a separate office where he would meet with people and keep most of his things. But he also had another desk in the open area where he would usually be. This made it easy for him to work alongside people. I also think the environment is one that any office should have. My father has had pretty much the same staff since I was a child and I’m as comfortable around them as I am around family. In short, the best kind of office is one where you know and trust the people you work with.

  36. Matthew R Ponsiglione May 1, 2017 at 12:06 am #

    I believe the end of the office is a horrible idea, although this article brought up good points on what the alternatives are I am personally not a fan of this. An office space is something I personally believe an office space helps people get work done better and it is a better working environment. An enclosed space in which you can have your own space it is much easier to focus on your work in that setting. If you begin to allow people to begin working from home on their devices there is less incentive to work. When you do work from a device there are so many distractions that can easily come into play, the internet being the obvious big distraction. When you are in an office setting you are placed in a working environment you are driven more to work. When you are in a more relaxed environment like your own home the work ethic and incentive to work becomes less and less. I do agree with the use of technology and reducing the use of paper, for in this day in age it has become very unnecessary when everything can be online. This being said, with all the technology being used it can also take jobs away from people who had office jobs at the time and are now in search of other jobs. An open office environment has no place for a worker to have their own designated work space and they are stuck sitting at a table every day. In a closed office environment you would arrive to work every day to go to your own personal space, maybe containing some things of personal value in their workspace making it their own. When you get in your own personal work space it is more comfortable rather than just sitting at a table doing computer work next to your co-workers. I have never been in an official work setting and when I hear of an office setting my mind automatically goes straight to the tv show the office. While it is a comedy show it seems to have a professional work area in which the boss has their own office, there is a conference room, and then everyone is seated at their own desks in respect to their departments. This is what I imagine a closed office work environment to look like. A personal desk where you can display personal items of value in order to decorate however you see fit. In this open office setting you are taking away the personal aspect of working in an office, the only thing described to be personalized is a locker for personal belongings. I believe it is important for workers to be comfortable in their work environment in order for them to do the best job they can. Allowing workers to begin working from home will cause lazy workers and the jobs that you need done will not get done as efficiently as someone who would have been working in a closed office setting.

  37. Konnor Vanemon September 25, 2017 at 12:49 pm #

    Throughout the past few decades, society has seen and gone through many transformations and evolutions, especially in the world of business. More women have joined the work force and eventually worked their way up to hold higher ranking positions within companies, technology has become the center of many companies in the way they communicate with others and carry out projects and assignments, work days are no longer eight hours long, and work environments have expanded to anywhere and everywhere due to the constant presence of laptops, tablets, and even smart phones. With the help of technological advances, offices have started to restructure the layout of their office space by removing the cubicles and other isolators, such as assigned desk spaces, throughout the office to create an “open concept” office. I find this architectural concept interesting because it is not the typical layout of an office, but it is more practical because it removes the barriers that not only isolates people from each other, but isolates communication and prohibits the sharing of ideas as well.
    While some people might find the open office concept to be more distracting than beneficial due to the lack of privacy and personal spaces, the concept brings several positive aspects that could improve the efficiency and sense of community within the company. By removing the dividers between desks and making the private offices of higher ranked positions more inviting by installing glass doors and walls, employees are more willing and able to converse and work with each other in addition to creating a more comfortable environment to express their ideas for projects. This will create increased productivity among employees because ideas, responsibilities, updates, information, and questions can be communicated quickly and accurately since it will most likely be done face to face in the same area instead of in different places of the office using technology where confusion and errors tend to occur. Furthermore, the productivity will improve because employees will have the opportunity to get to know their coworkers on a deeper level and build the professional relationships that they have with one another, which could make it easier and more enjoyable to work together on assignments as well as creating a more welcoming work environment and community that people will look forward to going to everyday.
    With technology holding such a prominent position in our personal and professional lives, people are losing the ability to verbally communicate; people prefer typing out what they need to say and sending it off rather than physically saying it to the person. Technology has made sharing data and information throughout the work place a simple task, but it has created isolation among team members as well as their superiors. Meetings have become conference calls or video conferences, and in some cases, the superior requests an email from the team with updates on the project instead of them physically meeting to go over things in detail. While technology will never disappear from offices, I believe that the open office concept will bring new life to the work environment and technology won’t be relied on as much by employees to communicate with other present employees because they will feel more willing to go and speak directly to them instead of carrying out the conversation over email or instant message. The open concept will not only improve the productivity of the office, but the sociability as well. My mother held a high-ranking position at her company for several years, and she loved everything about the job except that she and all the other higher up individuals had their private offices on one side of the office space while the members of their teams and the other departments were down several halls on the other side of the office space with a kitchen and other rooms separating them. She felt distant from her team at times, and she missed the face to face interactions with people since most of their meetings were held as conference calls. The open office concept would be a big change for a lot of companies that follow the typical office layout, but it would provide many benefits and transform the image of the work place.

  38. Lucas Notarianni March 13, 2018 at 2:07 pm #

    Enrique Dans claims that the style of office culture is shifting into the cloud based open office system. People bring what they need, work is done on laptops. People are saving paper and office space while also creating a new culture. The open office style may be becoming more popular, but I believe it has both positives and negatives.
    One positive I like is what Dans said about the social atmosphere. In the open office model, workers can branch their network out and become more involved with the office community than the cubical style of sitting next to the same few people every single day. This will help create a stronger bond with the workplace. If a worker does not like the person they are sitting with one day, they can move over to a new area to sit the next. For me, I am a creature of habit and I would probably find the same seat by the same area every day, but it is up to the bosses to enforce policy to create an open atmosphere for me and others.
    Another reason I like the open office model is because it will be more aesthetically pleasing, along with pleasing the wallets. Without the costly walls and masses of cubicles, the office can have some culture to it. Different areas have different functions and it allows for changes in the environment. The office can come to life where all the structure does not have to bet set in stone. It can be moved around to one’s liking and be unique for the office. With this the office can get better use out of its structures of desks and rooms that can be used differently for different situations. The other benefit is access. The cloud technology of sharing documents online helps save money on paper, along with not having to have piles of materials to bring around. The majority of the material will be stored online which will be easily accessible, where workers can be productive their own way. Whenever it is not group activity, or meeting, it is not looked at anymore as “whoever spends most time in the office is necessarily doing the most work”. A worker can be productive anywhere doing individual work.
    This individual work has downfalls though. It may be harder for workers to escape their job. Traditionally, at the end of the day a worker goes home and their materials are left at work. They cannot do anything extra or would not be contacted because they do not have the information on them. In an open office, workers might have to be accessed outside of normal hours to do quick activities that need to be done. Sure, it is better for productivity, but not mentally. Say someone goes away on a vacation, the boss can access them to sit down right from there to be in the meeting from video chat. The standard 9 to 5 will be expanded of doing pieces of work throughout the day here and there instead of being in one place and getting all done. There may be many distractions in the open office model because workers are not sitting in their plain cubical getting the work done. Workaholics will never stop because they are always with their work on the laptops wherever they go. From my experience of people, I know in a similar model, they are always on call and get emails constantly that they have to transfer documents and make calls whenever they are supposed to be off or taking a vacation day. In this way, there is no escape mentally from being away from work because they always have work with them. All in all, the open model is beneficial to the workplace but the cloud style should be more limited so employees can escape work mentally so when they are working they can put their most effort into each minute.

Leave a Reply