The Debate: Cubicles and Offices or Open Workspaces?

When the open office idea caught on, it CAUGHT ON. We loved the freshness and vibrancy; the idea that you go to work to collaborate, to learn, to interact. Companies demolished walls, pulled up carpet, and created spaces that are exhilarating and open and lively.

But then – as always – the new and different became a subject of debate.

Do open workspaces really work? Do the benefits of transparency and collaborative culture overshadow the price of privacy, amplified distractions, and oft-times decreased productivity? Sometimes, yes. Other times, absolutely not.

More and more, we are seeing “quiet rooms”, “do not disturb” buttons, and even (of all things) private offices being rebuilt.

Occasionally a writer’s block requires a visit to a colleague (or two or three) for ideas. There are moments when we need help forming a reply to a particularly difficult client, so we call on those around us. We have those times when we absolutely need to join forces, and we love the collaborative culture of an open workspace.

Other times, we have a project that requires hours of silence to buckle down and complete. We may have a difficult phone call to make. Sometimes we simply have no more tolerance left for the unabashed coworker chewing loudly on their third bag of chips. These are the moments that we long for our own private offices.

So it’s a toss-up! Or is it?

More and more businesses are refusing to choose either cubicles and offices or open workspaces. They simply incorporate both! They build war rooms for group brainstorming, they build cubicles for telesales, they build quiet rooms for those difficult projects. They work to provide functional office spaces that meet every employee’s diverse and individual needs.

Scroll through the below examples – you will love the marriage of the two concepts:

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