- 60% – of worker bees in cubicles and open plan offices feel a lack of sound privacy – also known as eavesdropping – and it’s a major source of frustration.
- 30% – feel frustrated by a lack of visual privacy – not because they’re on Facebook, but because they have to look at their colleagues whether they want to or not.
is cited as more important than controlling general noise levels, which can be blocked out by headphones. With open plan there’s no way to talk to co-workers, the boss or on the phone for personal reasons without privacy going out the window.
What this means for you
Though conventional thought says open plan is good for boosting workplace satisfaction and team effectiveness through collaboration, research from the University of Sydney suggests those in open plan offices and cubicles are the most miserable; while workers in their own offices came out ahead in every category.
Don’t have the space or budget to give everyone an office? Allocate ‘me-only’ rooms where employees can escape for a few hours when needed.