What Your Office Says About How You Run Your Company
You might not think it, but what your office looks like say a heck of a lot about how you run your company to both your customers and staff.
Your company culture is a big deal. The way your people interact with one another and the expectations they have can have a significant impact on your long-term success. Happy companies retain employees for longer and complete projects faster than those who are sick and broken.
The office has become something of a reflection of company culture. There are exceptions to these general rules, but you’d be surprised just how much they hold across the vast majority of workplaces.
Glass-Walled Executive Offices: You Don’t Trust Your Employees
When office tower blocks first began springing up in New York and Chicago, company managers began designing offices with glass-walled executive offices according to qz.com. The idea was to create a private space for those high up in the organization while at the same time allowing them to supervise their staff.
The feature became ubiquitous and now you can hardly find an office in the land which doesn’t incorporate some version of this feature. The problem with this approach is what it communicates on an unconscious level – the employer doesn’t trust the employees.
What’s strange about this whole setup is that the company selected and interviewed all the people who work for it. It should have a good idea of who it can trust and who it can’t if its processes are any good. Otherwise, it might as well admit it cannot judge people’s quality in the first place. It shouldn’t play at being able to conduct effective interviews if the truth is that it has no insight whatsoever.
Cubicles: Your Workers Are Drones
If you hop on a website like https://www.powerhousegroup.com.au/our-work/ you’ll see examples of what offices can be when they’re at their best. What you won’t find are rows upon rows of cubicles where workers work in pseudo solitary confinement until their lunch break.
Cubicles might be a popular office trope, but they’re a disaster when it comes to worker morale. People don’t want to be walled off from those around them. It interrupts communication and feels like they’re in prison.
Some offices attempt to get around this by lowering the height of the cubicle, putting partitions between rows of desks, but again, this concept is dated and makes workers feel replaceable.
Fine, if your staff can be substituted for another without much notice, then go with cubicles. Otherwise, opt for a more rational office setup.
Private Offices For The Execs: You’re Elitist
There’s nothing wrong in principle with being elitist. You want the best dentist to whip out that wisdom tooth that’s been causing you problems for the last six months.
There are, however, times when your elitism can screw you over. Office workers, you won’t be surprised to find out, don’t like the fact that certain people in their organization get special treatment. Make conditions the same for everyone, and you’ll have much happier people.
Image credit: Flickr.com