Company A decided to convert its headquarters from a traditional-private-office-and-cubicle layout to a sparkling new open office plan. Buildings and Operations (B&O) is given responsibility for the new construction and carrying out the transition. They:
- retain one of the most famous open office plan architects
- hires as employees two members of the architect’s team
- provides a complete pallette of office and room types for flexible use
- considers details from desk size, monitor position, spacing, seats, colors, etc… in detail.
And then to cover all their bases, prior to embarking on new construction, they take one additional step just to make absolutely certain: They set up a prototype which they themselves inhabit for six months. It lacks the beauty, light and spaciousness of the architect’s design and it involves make-do retrofits rather than new construction. But despite this, B&O's design does in fact work. Sure, some of those giving up private offices miss aspects of that, but for the most part, they’re well pleased – they love the cutting edge technology, newfound sense of community, the design features, etc… they also experience a problems, for example people tended to over-reserve the private breakaways and they realized that they need a mid-size conference room or two, not just the 1- and 2- person breakaways and large conference. And with this experience, they note what needs to be done differently and effect certain modifications in the design for New Building 1(NB1).
Prototype Data! comparing private-offices, cubicles and B&O OOP prototype along eight dimensions:
OOPs comparable to private-office. Far ahead of cubicles
Assured now, not only that the design is fundamentally sound but that they’ve also had the opportunity to correct the unforeseen shortcomings, they proceed with construction.
And what happens?