Distractions and the Open Office Environment

Distractions and the Open Office Environment By Laura Stack #productivity

Many workplaces today feature more open spaces and smaller, and often shared, workstations. These open floor plans have become “the new normal” in many organizations. Some people speak of them positively, citing the ability to collaborate with coworkers and the creative feeling they can inspire. However, I hear just as many complaints about the walk-in visitors, interruptions, and noise level negatively affecting workplace satisfaction, productivity, and speech privacy. According to research from UC Irvine, office workers are interrupted once every 11 minutes, and it can take up to 23 minutes to get back to what you were doing before you were interrupted. The brain isn't a marvel of infinite capacity; we are, after all, only human, with all the limitations that implies. One limitation li … [Read more...]