There’s a renewed debate in social media over the merits of open versus closed office space with the current trend seemingly pointing toward a return to closed office space. There’s little doubt, though, we’ll be having the same debate and the trend will swing back to open office space in the next few years because, well, that’s just the way it works.
Having worked in and built out both open and closed office space, I’m always amused by the passionate advocacy from people on both sides who are absolutely certain one is better than the other. That’s because it really comes down to the type of productivity your business and, by extension, your culture values.
Simply put, open office space places more value in team productivity than individual productivity while closed office space is the opposite. If your business or culture relies on high-functioning teams the more open the better. If it relies on individual productivity then close it up. It’s not about trends or styles, it’s about productivity. It’s really that simple.