The original cubicle came into being in the late 1960s, and at first office workers rebelled. For high level execs used to spacious offices they didn’t at first see the value of an enclosed workstation. However, mid-level employees accepted the idea of their own space as a step up in many cases as cubicles improved. Sadly, poor implementation has dogged the cubicle plan, causing many to discard the idea completely. Cramped cubicles and expectations of rigid uniformity ruin the usefulness of one of the best ideas of a century.
However, today’s cubicles are designed to rectify such issues, with many employers weighing the cost of worker dissatisfaction and loss of productivity and opting for a more relaxed cube concept. The cubicle can be an efficient and enjoyable workspace for most employees, offerings such perks as:
- Personal customization of cube layout with off module components
- Layouts that feel more open and reduce the “rat in a maze” feel
- Glass used in panels to make cubes brighter
- Ergonomic benefits (i.e.: adjustable worksurface heights)
- Varying cubicle wall height to make collaborative work easier
While cubicle are often be necessity small, to maximize square footage, most workers have some discretion in the internal layout of their small cubicles. If the design is flexible enough, each employee can end up in a cubicle that fits his or her size, style, needs and work habits. All it takes is a little flexibility, imagination and compassion on the part of the office manager to ensure employees remain happy and productive while working in close quarters.
Are your workers content in small cubicles? Have you managed to find the balance between a allowance as far as a cubicle footprint and the very real wants and needs of your best employees? Studies show that unhappy employees are less productive, and turnover is higher when employees feel their needs aren’t being met – even in a down economy. Figure out how cubicles can work best for you AND those who work for you, and implement strategies, design components and policies that allow for the best cubicle workplace you can possibly imagine – and your employees will be lest apt to grumble and more apt to appreciate their own individual fiefdoms!