Open plan offices revisited: what is the effect on communication?

Anthony Haynes writes: Back in the early days of this blog (12 Dec 2013), we published a post reporting research on the effects of open plan offices. The research was sceptical about some of the supposed benefits of open plan, including the belief that open formats promote personal communication. ¬†Now a new piece of research,… Read More

The effect of interruptions on productivity: the story that occupational psychology reveals

Anthony Haynes writes: It’s widely known that interruptions affect focus and so are apt to damage productivity. If, say, someone comes over to talk to you, the loss of productivity equates not only to the time taken by the conversation but also by the time taken afterwards to get your mind back in the zone.… Read More

How coaching works — and what it can achieve: the coachee’s view

Anthony Haynes writes: This week’s post is the ¬†first of a two-part case study focused on the impact of personal coaching. This week we hear the coachee’s perspective in the words of one coachee, who wishes to remain anonymous. Next week, we’ll publish the coach’s perspective. The coach concerned is Alison France, who we introduced… Read More

Open plan offices – good or bad? The evidence from psychological research

Anthony Haynes writes: A perennial issue in human resource management is office layout and design. In recent years, open plan has been gaining ground as management’s preferred layout. Its perceived advantages include: cost savings (principally, reducing square footage per employee); ease of monitoring (or perhaps ‘surveillance’); greater communication between staff. However, recent research published by… Read More

One story that research tells us about working in an office

Anthony Haynes writes: This, the third post in this week’s mini-series on research concerning work, focuses on the workplace itself. It draws on an article from the British Psychological Society’s Occupational Digest — a source that consistently presents relevant research in a concise, accessible, manner. The article considers how evolutionary psychology can be applied to… Read More