The workspace has changed a lot over the years. We’ve seen office spaces move from private office set ups to the dreaded cubicle and finally, in recent years, to the trend for open plan spaces.
Each of these has their advantages and disadvantages (although most workers would argue that the cubicle has many advantages) and finding the right balance is key.
The latest thinking is that the balance is found in hybrid workspaces which offer a mix of open-plan working with private areas.
However, no matter the workspace, it’s important that people have a sense of privacy when they need it. Here we look at some fantastic advice for allowing more privacy at your desk.
Advice on making the work desk more private
It’s important to involve everyone in the process of designing the perfect workspace and there are no more important stakeholders than your staff. Ask them how they work best and use that information to design a layout that allows them to work collaboratively and have privacy when they need it.
Allow control of privacy
Too many working environments and employers impose expectations of privacy or otherwise on their workforce.
Allow staff to control their own privacy, whether that’s by putting up a small notice saying they are busy, allowing them to book time in bookable private rooms or even just popping in their headphones to signal that they’re concentrating on an important task.
Allowing control of privacy is no use if there’s no choice. This is where the hybrid layout really comes into its own.
Create breakout areas where teams can meet in a relaxed environment and also provide small private office spaces and meeting areas for when teams need more private meetings, staff want to meet with clients or for people to just get away from their desks to concentrate on complex work.
Lead by example
If you’re responsible for designing the space, as well as the culture, it’s important that you show staff the same rules apply to you. In this case, it’s likely that you’ll need to do the reverse – you probably have a private area for working, something they might not always have.
As you allow staff to take more control of their privacy, it’s a good idea for you to also become more available. Take a space out on the work floor, at least for part of the week, and let staff know they can approach you.
Offering them more privacy while also becoming more accessible yourself narrows the gap between you and diffuses the sense of hierarchy a little, which makes for a happier and more productive workforce.
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If you’re in the process of redesigning the office, take a look at our Corniche Real Wood Veneer Office Desks. Manufactured to the highest standard, this range features thick real wood veneer desk tops and come in a range of 5 wood colour finishes.
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