Open-plan offices are the staple diet of corporate life. They’re thought to be both cost-saving and communication-inducing. But is it really all milk and honey?

A recent study of open plan offices reveals that they have just as many downsides as benefits. The question is whether or not the benefits ultimately outweigh the downsides.

Check out: Open Plan Offices: Not All They’re Cracked Up to Be





Think about it

 Answer the questions below.

  • What are some  benefits of open-space offices?
  • What are some downsides of open-space offices?
  • Do partitions in open-plan offices improve work standard?
  • What do some businesses do to improve the traditional open-plan office model?
  • Why does the writer mention “feedlot cattle” in the last paragraph? What does she want to illustrate?


Practice makes perfect

 Fill in the blank spaces with the words in bold.

down   –   from   –   at   –   to   –   for   –   up   –   into   –   away

That’s a pretty firm answer, but is there any way the open-plan office lovers can still justify their position? The study seems to assume an all-purpose, all-day office where workers are expected to do everything ________ take meetings ________ generate ideas and make calls. Many businesses are evolving ________ from this traditional model, either by breaking ________ their space ________ zones — some offering privacy ________ concentrated work and some space for interaction — or allowing their team members to break up their workweek, splitting not their space but their time between the office, a quiet corner ________ home and a coffee shop ________ the street (where the ambient buzz has been shown to increase creativity).


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