Over the weekend, a friend of mine gave me a tour of Bloomberg’s NYC office. Their 29-floor building is full of huge, open workspaces. Even the company big-wigs don’t get a private office; when they’re in town, they occupy one of the many transparent, glass-walled conference rooms scattered throughout the building. This is a similar set up to what we have at Harvest HQ, though on a much larger scale, and I think the atmosphere promotes equality and togetherness.
While there’s a lot to be said for this type of environment, the inevitable noise and distraction that comes with it can actually hinder what its supposed to foster: creativity through collaboration. Susan Cain comes to the defense of introverts and quiet workspaces in The Rise of the New Groupthink, an article from last Friday’s NY Times. Here’s the gist of it: equality and transparency are good, but collaborative spaces can decrease creativity, especially in introverts.