Busy? Available? Confusion in The Modern Workplace


By James Dell, Account Executive, IComm

Challenges of the Modern Workplace

The modern workplace, the workplace of the future, modern ways of working, agile ways of working... You'd have to be living under a rock to have not heard of these, and while as great as these buzz words are, they do pose a different sort of challenge. Noise.

The world of open plan offices means disruptions at every corner.

So the questions is, how do we maintain focus at the task at hand while our noisy co-worker (not naming any names) proceeds to speak at 200 decibels? Or if that same person is trying to get your attention thinking you're not on the phone even though you are? Do we maintain the status quo of awkwardly pointing at our headset and mouthing the words "on the phone" with a fake smile hiding the frustration of those precious seconds lost as the person on the other end continues, none the wiser. Think about how much productivity has been lost collectively in those few seconds, and not just after you've shooed your colleague away what about the time it take it get your train of thought back and actually remember what you were doing and saying?

How do we maintain focus on our task at hand when open offices mean disruptions at every corner?

If you're experiencing these issues, you're not alone. Even big companies with huge change management processes, HR departments, and modern workplace specialists face this common-yet-annoying issue. The scenario typically goes something like this; office relocation, different ways of working practice, and the introduction of Millennials in the work place (damn Millennials).

So how do we solve these issues? Go back to cubicles? The introduction of Millennials in the work place has all but abolished the humble office: Gen Y wants to work in cliché offices which resemble more play centres than places of business.  (For the record: I'm a Millenial.)