An open workspace is a working environment where there aren’t any internal walls or divided smaller offices. It is a place where people come together to work. The main purpose of such work settings is to encourage communication among employees. They nourish creativity and are great for the company’s culture. But as each coin has two sides, they also have their disadvantages. Open work settings can be loud and noisy, which can lower productivity and also hinder face-to-face conversations. 

So how do we make them more productive? Here are 10 tips on how to behave in an open office environment:

1. Do not take calls in your seat: we receive several calls daily these may be personal or professional in nature. However irrespective of the nature of these calls you should avoid taking them in our seats, you can always walk up to the staircase or go to the breakroom to take the call. By doing so you can make sure that no one gets disturbed when you are conversing on the call. 

2. Avoid personal conversations: humans are social beings; we cannot survive without interacting with each other. Nevertheless, we should make sure that we keep our personal conversations with our colleagues to a bare minimum. You can always discuss them during breaks or after office hours. By avoiding personal conversations, you won’t be disturbing the colleagues around you as open office environments don’t have much privacy.

3. Ask for permission: in an open office environment you are working with several colleagues, and you share most of the space. Hence, it is important that you don’t change the settings for example: switching off the light, switching on the AC, etc. at your convenience. You should ensure that you make such changes after asking and taking the permission of the people around you. 

4. Be hygienic: you must remain hygienic while working in an open office environment, if not for yours then at least for the sake of your colleagues. You can do this by showering every day, not taking off your shoes at your desk, wearing clean clothes, not applying makeup at your desk, etc.

5. Keep your desk clean: when you are working in an open office you are not only confined to your desk you share a common space, hence, it is essential that you keep your desk clean because you are not only representing your own desk but the whole office. Store your files, documents, and stationery in an organized manner so that your desk doesn’t look disorganized.

6. Mind your own business: it is okay to ask your colleagues for help occasionally, but nobody likes being bothered again and again. You can’t keep roaming around asking your colleagues for a pen, charger, and water every now and then. It is essential that you carry own your own stuff and ensure that you have everything you will need before leaving your house. 

7. Use headphones: while working you will have a few moments in which you would like to relax by listening to songs or watching videos, there is nothing wrong with this, it is necessary to take a break sometimes. But you should make sure that you use headphones while doing so to make sure that you don’t disturb others around you.

 

8. Do basic chores: wherever you may work, there will always be a few small tasks that need to be done like fixing the bulb, emptying the dustbin, keeping the floor clean, etc. When we have our own cabins, we make sure to take care of them as much as possible, but when it comes to open offices, people tend to neglect these chores because they expect someone else will do it. But this shouldn’t be the case, you should make sure that you take the initiatives to finish such basic chores. 

9. Keep your phone on mute while not speaking: many business calls are conference calls in nature. Unless you are the person speaking you should ensure that you keep your phone on mute so that the other person who is speaking doesn’t get disturbed. 

10. Avoid eating at your desk: there are a few offices that allow you to eat at your desk, but this is not a good practice. The aroma coming from your food can distract your colleagues, they may not approach you regarding the same, but it surely will affect them. It is not always possible that you may get enough food you can distribute to others. Hence it is advisable that you avoid eating at your desk.

The studies have indicated that employees in open offices are physically more active than those in private offices or cubicles. Apart from that, an open workspace is suitable for promoting creativity among the employees, as well as developing relationships. On another note, open floor plans can be noisy, which can negatively affect employee productivity. Whenever you’re having a tough time staying effective in an open office, we hope you’ll find these tips useful.

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