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Office space

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Office space

  1. 1. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 Office space: Case study review By: Jen Serdetchnaia Table of Contents Introduction 2 Background: Opening and closing space 2 The problem: Distracting open space 2 Analytical framework 3 Cases in favour of open space 4 Case 1: Facebook employee 4 Case 2: Mayor Bloomberg’s “Bullpen” office 5 Case 3: The Bridgespan Group 6 Case 4: W&P Design in Brooklyn 6 Cases against open space 7 Case 1: Senior writer at an ad agency based in New York City 7 Case 2: Reddit thread in response to Joel Polsky’s interview 8 Case 3: Game Developer magazine study 8 Case 4: My personal experience 9 Conclusion: The future of office space and the future of my research 9 Appendix 10 Background: Opening and closing space 10 Analytical framework tables 13 Table 2: Tanner Christensen at Facebook 13 Table 3: Bloomberg at the “Bullpen” 14 Table 4: The Bridgespan Group new office 14 Table 5: W&P Brooklyn office 15 Table 6: New York City ad agency 15 Table 7: Coders on Reddit 16 Table 8: Game Developer magazine study 17 Table 9: My personal experience 17 References 18 1
  2. 2. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 Introduction In the cyclical history of office space layouts, this past decade saw the most recent rise of the open office design spearheaded by Silicon Valley tech giants like Facebook, Apple and Google, as a symbol of collaboration and egalitarianism. Open office design has since been adopted by a reported 70% of all organizations in North America (Mann 2017) to improve collaboration, create a sense of community, and, not of least importance, cut costs for rent and structure. Almost as quickly as the open office design was adopted, reports began to surface that the new layout was not living up to the hype​—​something that should have come as no surprise to those of us who pay attention to history and are aware of the oppressive connotation that haunted the open offices of the 1950’s (Entis 2016). Workers are suffering from broken concentration and lacking privacy. Perhaps the greatest irony is that this time around, the open office pioneers are some of the world’s largest employers of developers​—​who arguably require the greatest affordance for concentration. Are the benefits of an open office layout worth the challenges? Are private offices the answer? How can businesses meet their bottom line goals while enhancing worker happiness and productivity? What does the future of the office look like? In this paper, I take a look at a series of short cases in two categories: one that describes the benefits of open office space, and another that describes the drawbacks. Although I am interested specifically in the technology and creative industries, the scope of how a space can impact workers can be broadened to the entirety of the knowledge worker body. I then provide insight into how I will further incorporate my findings both in favour and against open space in my further research. Background: Opening and closing space See ​Appendix​. The problem: Distracting open space My hypothesis is that open office space is detrimental to worker satisfaction and to quality of output, especially for workers that require extended periods of focus, such as those in the technology and creative industries. My goal is to present an analytical framework to evaluate cases that both support and oppose my hypothesis. I plan to take the learnings from analyzing these cases within a framework and apply them to my broader Major Research Project (MRP), which focuses on the affordances of public shared spaces in empowering entrepreneurs, freelancers, students, remote workers and others without traditional office space in completing tasks. Countless research studies and my personal experience suggest that complex challenges take more than a few minutes to solve. Constant conversation, interruption and distraction may generate great ideas, but it can prevent the focused down time required to bring some of those great ideas to fruition. Too much distraction may prevent the workers from having sustained periods of time to think and to work, reducing both creativity and productivity. Furthermore, research shows that although open space can create a sense of cohesion and friendship, that sense of cohesion can actually mask the true negative impacts of the frustrations that come with open office environments (Konnikova 2014). Nearly half of the workers surveyed in open space environments identified the lack of sound privacy as a problem, and a third of the workers also identified visual privacy as a problem (Kaufman 2014). Researchers stated that “the loss of productivity due to noise distraction … was doubled in open-plan offices compared to private offices” 2
  3. 3. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 (Kaufman 2014). It is ironic that the main issue that open offices aim to solve​—​communication​—​has been identified as a problem by fewer than 10% of all workers in any type of office (Kaufman 2014). Even more ironically​—​workers in private offices were less likely to identify communication as a problem (Kaufman 2014). Proponents of open environments argue that in order for us to fairly evaluate the performance of an open space office compared to a private office, we need to redefine the productivity. According to Gallup, while it is true that reduced privacy and increased interruption may lead to lower levels of code or visual output, it may increase the rate of relevant output and reduce the amount of rework due to miscommunication (Mann 2014). Analytical framework My research question is what kind of environment best supports workers? As previously stated, my hypothesis is that open office spaces are detrimental to workers based on parameters that define worker satisfaction and success. I based these parameters on reading a number of cases and reviews. I am interested in the ability of a space to sufficiently meet workers’ requirements in the following parameters: ● Sustained focus, concentration and attention ● Productivity and output ● Creative thinking ● Satisfaction ● Community and team cohesion ● Identifying with organizational, team or project mission and vision ● Identity as a worker ● Avoiding illness I am curious about how these framework impacts workers across a number of senses, including: ● Sound ● Vision ● Tactile ● Smell Table 1: Analytical framework to examine how space impacts worker Think of the y-axis as the message, and the x-axis as the medium. Sound Vision Tactile Smell Sustained focus, concentration and attention Productivity and output Creative thinking Satisfaction Community and team cohesion Identifying with organizational, team or project mission and vision Identity as a worker 3
  4. 4. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 Avoiding illness Autonomy and control over environment Privacy I acknowledge that everyone works differently, so the affordances of a space will not impact two people alike. My MRP research dives deeper into reviewing how individual differences and personal habits are accommodated differently by different spaces. From this analysis, I am curious to learn about common threads in how people work, while acknowledging that there is no average. Cases in favour of open space Cases in favour of open space are defined as the case studies that highlight the positives of working in an open space. Case 1: Facebook employee Facebook boasts the world’s largest single open office layout, with the sole room housing 2,800 employees (Frankel 2015). Of those employees, the majority are engineers. The space was designed by architect Frank Gehry (Frankel 2015). Figure 1: Frank Gehry-designed open concept office at Facebook Source: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/analysis-and-features/facebooks-new-headquarters-where-ope n-plan-is-king-and-frictionless-working-is-the-aim-a6756426.html One employee took to an ​Inc. Magazine ​column​ ​to defend the social networking giant. The defendant is Facebook Product Designer Tanner Christensen, who has also written extensively on creativity (Christensen 2016). In support of Facebook’s open concept office, Christensen lauds the focus on mobility and flexibility and the provision of multiple types of working spaces available to any employee with a laptop. He highlights the prominence of “Work from home Wednesdays”, a day reserved for few meetings when workers are permitted to work from home for some heads-down time (Christensen 2016). He then states that noise-cancelling headphones and 27-inch monitors are provided by the company on request​—​and that the tools can be viewed as visual and auditory cues to avoid distracting the worker (Christensen 2016). Most importantly, the cues are minded and 4
  5. 5. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 respected within the office culture. Finally, Christensen highlights the most commonly cited benefit of open offices: chance encounters that offer cross-pollination of ideas and solutions. In analyzing the source, I think I can be somewhat skeptical of Christensen’s case, as he may have felt there could be career incentive in writing as positively as possible about his current employer. See analytical framework Table 2 for Case 1 in Appendix. Case 2: Mayor Bloomberg’s “Bullpen” office Michael Bloomberg famously redesigned the New York City Mayor’s office when he became Mayor in the fall of 2001 (Barbaro 2013). He knocked down walls to create an open space likened to the trading floors where he began his career (Barbaro 2013). Fifty cubicles with low dividers are fit into the small space, allowing for little privacy but for maximum accessibility to Bloomberg (Barbaro 2013). Bloomberg believes that being accessible to his chief executives is a defining leadership characteristic and is symbolic of opening the government up for transparency (Barbaro 2013). He was a proponent of a more open environment that is less focused on hierarchy, and he felt that the open office was the best design representation of that (Barbaro 2013). His subordinates who enjoyed working in the open office layout cited the more old-fashioned reason of being able to know what co-workers were doing as a bonus (Barbaro 2013). Figure 4: Mayor Bloomberg’s “bullpen” Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/23/nyregion/bloombergs-bullpen-candidates-debate-its-future.html As Bloomberg transitioned out of office, mayoral candidates showed their distaste for the open space, pointing out that it’s difficult to concentrate in, that it may actually isolate the Mayor via too much noise, and that it confuses the hierarchy and command structure (Barbaro 2013). Bloomberg resolutely disputed these claims, saying nothing can be more important than being available, accessible, and open, and that that is the only way to run a successful organization (Barbaro 2013). In analyzing the source, I can appreciate that Michael Bloomberg is very much influenced by his background as a trader and his experience working in the environment of a trading floor. I can also note that a lot of the benefit that Bloomberg cited of the open space is symbolic, and not necessarily focused on impact to output. See analytical framework Table 3 for Case 2 in Appendix. 5
  6. 6. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 Case 3: The Bridgespan Group The Bridgespan Group is a non-profit consulting group based in Boston, Massachusetts. Two executives from the Group’s Boston office detail in ​The Harvard Business Review​ that after careful review of the challenges with open office space, they went ahead and designed an office space anyway​—​and succeeded (Rosenberg & Campbell 2014). The Group tackled the office redesign as a co-design challenge, involving employees from across the company, and using the best and worst of open layout results as guidelines for what to do and what not to do (Rosenberg & Campbell 2014). Six months prior to the writing of the article, the 70-person office was moved from two floors of cubicles to a single top-floor open design (Rosenberg & Campbell 2014). The Group’s goal was to tear down hierarchies, provide a more flexible working environment, and save on costs (Rosenberg & Campbell 2014). They report that after six months in their new space, they are experiencing a greater amount of productivity, energy and connectedness (Rosenberg & Campbell 2014). In analyzing the source, I can point out that as executives at the Group who had significant input into the design of the office and significant responsibility over recruitment, the partners are incentivized to provide a favourable view. Additionally, this case is different in pertaining to a small organization and a small office (70 people compared to the aforementioned 2,000+), with people working on tasks where cross-pollination of ideas may be crucial (consulting compared to coding). Figure 5: New office for The Bridgespan Group Source: ​https://hbr.org/2014/10/an-open-office-experiment-that-actually-worked See analytical framework Table 4 for Case 3 in Appendix. Case 4: W&P Design in Brooklyn W&P Design is an early-stage start-up in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, with 12 workers (Entis 2016). Although it is definitely noisy, co-founders Eric Prum and Josh Williams state they think it’s the only way to work given that their “workflow depends on collaboration” (Entis 2016). One example of this workflow success is when two co-workers discussed the possibility of shutting down the concept for a Nacho cookbook (Entis 2016). Eavesdropping colleagues turned around and convinced the others it was a good idea, and the group had an impromptu brainstorming session for recipes (Entis 2016). The book was set for production as of the writing of the article, permitted by the affordances of open space (Entis 2016). In analyzing the source, I like this kind of case because it provides concrete proof for the benefit of an open office layout, and acknowledges the important role that company context plays in office design. 6
  7. 7. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 Figure 7: W&P open plan office Source: ​http://fortune.com/2016/05/12/the-open-office-concept-is-dead/ See analytical framework Table 5 for Case 4 in Appendix. Cases against open space Cases against open space are defined as the case studies that highlight the negatives of working in an open space. Case 1: Senior writer at an ad agency based in New York City One senior writer at a New York City ad agency had the following to say about her move from a private office to a shared space: “Our new, modern Tribeca office was beautifully airy, and yet remarkably oppressive. Nothing was private. On the first day, I took my seat at the table assigned to our creative department, next to a nice woman who I suspect was an air horn in a former life. All day, there was constant shuffling, yelling, and laughing, along with loud music piped through a PA system. As an excessive water drinker, I feared my co-workers were tallying my frequent bathroom trips. At day’s end, I bid adieu to the 12 pairs of eyes I felt judging my 5:04 p.m. departure time. I beelined to the Beats store to purchase their best noise-cancelling headphones in an unmistakably visible neon blue.” (Kaufman 2014) On her very first day in an open office space, Kaufman sees a number of immediate problems with her new space. Those problems included interrupted concentration through noise distraction, and fear of judgment and lack of privacy from her co-workers. In analyzing the source, I can say that Lindsey Kaufman is a writer in the advertising industry and has been working in New York City for about a decade. This would indicate that she began her career during cubicle office culture, and recently had to make the transition to open office space. See analytical framework Table 6 for Case 5 in Appendix. 7
  8. 8. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 Case 2: Reddit thread in response to Joel Polsky’s interview Stack Overflow CEO Joel Polsky’s interview on the importance of privacy and concentration for worker satisfaction and output inspired a lively thread on the site ​Reddit​ from developers supporting his claim: ● “The foosball table is right next to my desk in our office. Like, 10 meters away. I feel like I’m slowly going crazy.” (Collins 2016) ● “Went from home, to private office, to open floor plan and it’s more difficult, for me at least, to concentrate. Generally there’s a nerf war once a day, too.” (Collins 2016) ● “Currently quitting a job at an open plan office. My work rate is lower than when I worked at home with my 6 month old daughter.” (Collins 2016) ● “I’ll take an open floor plan if I didn’t have to attend so many meetings that have nothing to do with me, but my attendance is mandatory.” (Collins 2016) ● “Headphones give me a headache. Earplugs disorient me. Office noise—especially scrum meetings or half a dozen people on the phone at the same time—make it difficult for me to think. Interruptions kill my productivity because it can take me 10-15 minutes to get back to same mental state in the code that I had before the interruption.” (Collins 2016) In analyzing the source, I feel confident in assuming the validity of the claims, as most ​Reddit ​contributors assume anonymous identities and can count on their confidentiality. They speak without repercussion. While anonymity has the power to feed the negativity of Internet trolling, in this case, their comments are likely honest and accurate to their experiences. See analytical framework Table 7 for Case 6 in Appendix. Case 3: ​Game Developer ​magazine study The Game Developer ​magazine study came at the issue of interruption from a scientific approach, looking at the cost of being interrupted and then quantifying that cost in a typical open office environment. The study found that a programmer takes an average of 10 to 15 minutes to resume the work they were doing prior to an interruption (Parnin 2013). Based on a typical open office setting, that would mean a programmer may get just a single uninterrupted two-hour session daily (Parnin 2013). Figure 3: Tracking the change in pupil diameter over time for individuals given tasks of varying difficulty Source: ​https://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/190891/programmer_interrupted.php 8
  9. 9. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 In analyzing the source, I think using biological science to make against the distractions of an open office layout is an interesting alternative approach. See analytical framework Table 8 for Case 7 in Appendix. Case 4: My personal experience I’m personally inspired to conduct this research as an introvert who works as a designer in an open space layout. I find that in addition to the constant interruptions that pull me out of “deep work” (Newport 2016​), ​I find myself drained after a day of interacting and interfacing with people (instead of ideas). This impacts more than my personal well-being​—​it also impacts my output. As a designer, I need heads-down time to think through solutions and ideas in order to present them coherently. I find the open office layout prompts me to prioritize immediacy over importance day after day. For that reason, I get my best and most important work done outside of working hours. See analytical framework Table 9 for Case 8 in Appendix. Conclusion: The future of office space and the future of my research I conclude that the first and foremost most important aspect of designing efficient space is context. What may work for one company, may not work for another. This is part of the problem with the recent trend toward blindly accepting any innovation from San Francisco​—​it may work in the Bay area market, but it may not work in ours. The case studies examined showed that open floor layouts may work in specific cases, where the office is small or a start-up, and very much dependent on collaboration to define a workflow. It also seems to work with a different definition of production: open office may be less helpful where the workers are required for traditional outputs, like those of designers and coders, and more helpful where the workers are required for ideas, like consultants and strategists. This distinction begs that we ask the definition of production. Is production the lines of code written and the wireframes produced, or is it a shift in the strategic direction of the company? Again, this comes down to context. In fact, I think defining production at a strategic level often makes more sense for smaller, newer organizations where employees sitting around their desks in an office can still bear impact on those kinds of decisions. Regardless of the egalitarian vibe that large tech companies try to create with their vibe, it is still unlikely that every developer will have the determining votes in the strategy of Facebook, as if it were a democracy. This brings me to my next point: much of the benefit of open space seems to be symbolic. It is the symbolism of egalitarianism, openness, transparency, community and collaboration that open spaces promote. That symbolism is not without advantages, as studies prove that open offices do boost workers’ positive feelings (Konnikova 2014). The issue, of course, is that there is yet to be a link proven between this positivity and any quantifiable outcome to the company. The quantification comes in with cost savings. It is undeniable in any of the cases laid out that one of the motivators for the move toward open office was the relative cost saving of reduced square footage and less structural build out. The question remains whether the cost-savings are worth the certain drop in output and job satisfaction from workers, which can also lead to higher attrition. 9
  10. 10. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 Christensen’s defense of the Facebook office space almost implicates it more than absolves it. In my analysis, Christensen lauding “Work from home Wednesday” at his Facebook office and the flexibility to come in earlier or stay later when it’s quiet is an admission of the company’s failure in providing sufficient quiet space at the office. I feel similarly about his emphasizing the availability of 27-inch monitors and noise-cancelling headphones to act both as personal concentration aides and as social cues to co-workers: sounds like a last attempt to do work amidst chaos. The office of the future will likely have a flexible, hybrid layout with a mixture of cubicles, offices and open space. The office of the future will also likely promote a culture where workers can take advantage or privacy or collaboration as needed, and where taking social cues will be encouraged. As identified in some of these cases, it’s not alway that there is no available private space​—​it’s also that when everyone expects to see everyone all the time, it can be frowned upon to remove yourself from the situation; similarly, it’s not always that headphones and monitors don’t work to block out the distraction, it’s that co-workers ignore the social cues and interrupt you via tactility anyway. These points emphasize the importance of a culture, which we can call the system, being built around the office, which we can call the feature. My further research for my Major Research Project will examine how freelancers, entrepreneurs, students and remote workers are accommodated in the shared public spaces where people commonly work in Toronto, and look at the greater impact that the availability of shared space has on both individual worker satisfaction and also on the greater economy. I will use the learnings from these case studies on the affordances of different types of spaces as a framework to inform my analysis of the shared spaces. Appendix Background: Opening and closing space The style of office layouts is almost as cyclical as the style for denim, but arguably more impactful. Most recently, the open space layout has been ushered in by Silicon Valley tech giants in favour of collaboration and rebellion against “The Man”. Like many Bay area innovations, the open space layout has subsequently been adopted by over 70% of all companies in North America; and like many Bay area innovations, applying the innovation outside of the Bay area context does not create the same kind of solution. Ironically, the open office solution makes perhaps the least sense in the Bay area, where whiz technologists require hours of heads-down time free from interruption to execute on the cutting-edge technology. The problem that open offices attempt to address is collaboration and communication among co-workers, which strategists say can lead to cross-pollination of great ideas, shortcuts in execution, and scrapping bad ideas earlier. However, collaboration was identified as a problem among a relatively minimal 10% of the workers surveyed in all kinds of offices, with the number ironically being lower for workers in private offices as compared to their counterparts in open space offices (Kaufman 2014). When Facebook opened the world’s then largest open concept office to house 2,800 developers, industry leaders criticized the design (Frankel 2015). Joel Spolsky, CEO of Stack Overflow said: “I think Facebook was very pleased with themselves, that they had built what they thought was the ultimate, most amazing place for developers,” he said. “And if you went to Hacker News and read the comments, 99.98% of the comments said, ‘I would hate to work there.” (Collins 2016) Spolsky said that at his three companies​—​Stack Overflow, Trello and Fog Creek Software​—​developers are able to work from home or have private offices with natural sunlight (Collins 2016). 10
  11. 11. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 Figure 2: CEO of Stack Overflow discusses why open office space doesn’t work for developers Source: ​https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=R1V8OUOb-Hw Apple has outdone Facebook with its new headquarters, Apple Park, which houses 12,000 people, a lot of it in the open space layout (Marks 2017). Figure 1: Apple Campus 2 Source: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/on-small-business/wp/2017/08/16/some-apple-employees-may-quit- over-new-open-office-floor-plan/?utm_term=.383c9bf72f5b Nonetheless, open office layouts are attractive for reasons beyond their affordances for collaboration: they offer cost savings to companies of up to 50% per employee, as they save on both space and structural build-out (Dizik 2016). The economic recession of 2008 sped up the transition toward open spaces, as organizations looked for every possible cost-saving (Dizik 2016). In his blog, developer Nathan Marz surfaced a lower but still impressive number of an average of 9.2% cost saving per employee in an open space (Marz 2014). He, however, argued that if employee productivity fell more than 10% as a result of being distracted in an open save, than the cost-saving becomes merely a cost (Marz 2014). The concept for the open office was officially conceived in the 1950s by a team in Hamburg, Germany, (Konnikova 2014), but in reality, the open office space has been around longer than that. Post offices in the 1920s were open offices, as were many other working spaces. 11
  12. 12. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 Figure 1: Washington, 1923. "Stamp Division, Post Office." Source: ​http://www.shorpy.com/node/4322 In its day, it was the cubicle that served as the antidote to the issues found in the open offices prevalent in the 1950s. The cubicle was invented in 1964 as an ‘action office’ by Robert Propst, chief executive at Herman Miller (Entis 2014). The action office was meant to address the stark lack of privacy suffered by junior employees and the lack of autonomy and control they felt over their environment (Entis 2014). Propst hoped that the action office would liberate employees from scrutiny and allow them to choose their posture and position throughout the day (Entis 2014). His prototype was made from high-quality adjustable panels that allowed workers to choose to sit or stand (Entis 2014). Figure 4: ‘Action office’ concept that became the cubicle Source: ​http://fortune.com/2016/05/12/the-open-office-concept-is-dead/ Propst’s prototype became the cubicle when interpreted for mass production, becoming a different kind of symbol for oppression over the years, inspiring iconic stories like Mike Judge’s 1999 cult classic ​Office Space, ​set in a bleak cubicle environment. 12
  13. 13. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 Figure 6: Scene from ​Office Space, ​breaking out of the cubicle trap Source: ​Office Space So goes the trend cycle. Analytical framework tables Table 2: Tanner Christensen at Facebook Sound Vision Tactile Smell Sustained focus, concentration and attention Good - noise-cancelling headphones Fair - 27-inch monitor Productivity and output Creative thinking Good - cross-pollination of ideas due to chance encounters Satisfaction High Community and team cohesion High Identifying with organizational, team or project mission and vision High Identity as a worker Avoiding illness Able to work from home when feeling under the weather Autonomy and control over environment “Work from home Wednesday’s” Privacy None None 13
  14. 14. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 Table 3: Bloomberg at the “Bullpen” Sound Vision Tactile Smell Sustained focus, concentration and attention Loud No privacy Productivity and output Difficult to concentrate Creative thinking Access to a lot of different officials Satisfaction High - Open government Community and team cohesion High - Team camaraderie Identifying with organizational, team or project mission and vision High Identity as a worker Avoiding illness Autonomy and control over environment Low Privacy None None None Table 4: The Bridgespan Group new office Sound Vision Tactile Smell Sustained focus, concentration and attention Flexible layout Productivity and output Flexible layout Creative thinking More impromptu meetings and collaboration Satisfaction High - Open government Community and team cohesion High - Team camaraderie Identifying with organizational, team High 14
  15. 15. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 or project mission and vision Identity as a worker Avoiding illness Autonomy and control over environment Significant - flexible work spaces Privacy Table 5: W&P Brooklyn office Sound Vision Tactile Smell Sustained focus, concentration and attention Noisy Productivity and output Creative thinking More impromptu ideas and effective cross-pollination Satisfaction Community and team cohesion High Identifying with organizational, team or project mission and vision High Identity as a worker Avoiding illness Autonomy and control over environment Limited Limited Privacy Lacking Lacking Table 6: New York City ad agency Sound Vision Tactile Smell Sustained focus, concentration and attention Constant shuffling, yelling and laughing, along with loud music piped through the PA system 15
  16. 16. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 Productivity and output Creative thinking Satisfaction Low Community and team cohesion Fear of judgment Identifying with organizational, team or project mission and vision High Identity as a worker Lack of privacy impacts identity Avoiding illness Autonomy and control over environment None None Privacy Lacking Lacking Table 7: Coders on Reddit Sound Vision Tactile Smell Sustained focus, concentration and attention Headphones are insufficient, social cues ignored Screens are insufficient, social cues ignored Constant physical interruptions Productivity and output Decreasing Decreasing Creative thinking Takes time to get back to creative problem-solving after interrupted Satisfaction Low Low Low Community and team cohesion Indifferent Identifying with organizational, team or project mission and vision Indifferent Identity as a worker Lack of privacy impacts identity Avoiding illness Autonomy and control over environment None None 16
  17. 17. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 Privacy Lacking Lacking Table 8: ​Game Developer ​magazine study Sound Vision Tactile Smell Sustained focus, concentration and attention Breaks focus Breaks focus Breaks focus Productivity and output Drops significantly Drops significantly Creative thinking Takes 10-15 minutes to get back to output levels Satisfaction Low Low Low Community and team cohesion Indifferent Identifying with organizational, team or project mission and vision Indifferent Identity as a worker Avoiding illness Autonomy and control over environment Privacy Table 9: My personal experience Sound Vision Tactile Smell Sustained focus, concentration and attention Conversations Interruptions Productivity and output Drops significantly Drops significantly Creative thinking Some benefit from side conversations Satisfaction Community and team cohesion Increased Increased Identifying with organizational, team or project mission and vision Increased 17
  18. 18. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 Identity as a worker Avoiding illness Sick more often Autonomy and control over environment None Privacy Low Low Low References Barbaro, Michael. “The bullpen Bloomberg built: Candidates debate its future.” 22 Mar 2013. ​The New York Times. ​Accessed 20 Oct 2017. ​http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/23/nyregion/bloombergs-bullpen-candidates-debate-its-future.html Christensen, Tanner. “How Facebook keeps employees happy in the world’s largest open office.” 9 Mar 2016. ​Inc. ​Accessed 25 Oct 2017. https://www.inc.com/tanner-christensen/how-facebook-keeps-employees-happy-in-the-worlds-largest-open-office.html Collins, Keith. “Programmers really hate open floor plans.” 12 Oct 2016. ​Quartz. ​Accessed 10 Oct 2017. https://qz.com/806583/programmers-hate-open-floor-plans/ Dizik, Alina. “Open offices are losing some of their openness.” 2 Oct 2016. ​The Wall Street Journal. ​Accessed 2 Nov 2017. https://www.wsj.com/articles/open-offices-are-losing-some-of-their-openness-1475460662 Entis, Laura. “The open-office concept is dead.” 12 May 2016. ​Fortune. ​Accessed 8 Nov 2017. http://fortune.com/2016/05/12/the-open-office-concept-is-dead/ Frankel, Todd C. “Facebook’s new headquarters where open-plan is king and ‘frictionless working’ is the aim.” 1 Dec 2015. Independent. ​Accessed 2 Nov 2017. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/analysis-and-features/facebooks-new-headquarters-where-open-plan-is-king- and-frictionless-working-is-the-aim-a6756426.html Kaufman, Lindsey. “Google got it wrong. The open-office trend is destroying the workplace.” 30 Dec 2014. ​The Washington Post. ​Accessed 30 Oct 2017. https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2014/12/30/google-got-it-wrong-the-open-office-trend-is-destroying-t he-workplace/?tid=a_inl&utm_term=.930f2b6dc74a Konnikova, Maria. “The open-office trap.” 7 Jan 2014. ​The New Yorker. ​Accessed 30 Oct 2017. https://www.newyorker.com/business/currency/the-open-office-trap Mann, Annamarie. “How to make an open office floor plan work.” 22 June 2017. ​Gallup News. ​Accessed 1 Nov 2017. http://news.gallup.com/opinion/gallup/212741/open-office-floor-plan-work.aspx Marks, Gene. “Some Apple employees may quit after ‘open’ office floor plan.” 16 Aug 2017. ​The Washington Post. ​Accessed 1 Nov 2017. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/on-small-business/wp/2017/08/16/some-apple-employees-may-quit-over-new-open -office-floor-plan/?utm_term=.0a1d64b5e706 18
  19. 19. Lab 3 - Assignment 2a Jen Serdetchnaia November 12, 2017 Marz, Nathan. “The inexplicable rise of open floor plans in tech companies.” 24 Feb 2014. ​Thoughts from the red planet. Accessed 5 Nov 2017. ​http://nathanmarz.com/blog/the-inexplicable-rise-of-open-floor-plans-in-tech-companies.html Newport, Cal. ​Deep work. ​5 Jan 2016. Parnin, Chris. “Programmer, interrupted.” 22 Apr 2013. ​Gamasutra: The art and business of making games. ​Accessed 8 Nov 2017. ​https://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/190891/programmer_interrupted.php Rosenberg, Paul & Campbell, Kelly. “An open office experiment that actually worked.” 3 Oct 2014. ​Harvard Business Review. 28 Oct 2017. ​https://hbr.org/2014/10/an-open-office-experiment-that-actually-worked 19

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