July 5, 2018
The open plan office versus closed debate rages on, and rather than running out of steam in the face of all of the evidence and reasoned argument put forward one one side or the other by many industry thought-leaders, it seems to have nine lives. Those grand and ground-breaking new offices occupied by the world’s tech giants seem to be particularly popular examples of why highly open and transparent workplaces do, or don’t work, especially those headline-grabbing offices created around the world by Google. This public debate has led to some very interesting and insightful discussions in various forums (to which I have contributed), inspiring me to synthesise the key themes into four reasons why a Google office is not necessarily the right type of office for your organisation. Many thanks in particular are due to David Rostie and Kay Sargent for their valuable online contributions to the debates which inspired this article.