In a recent blog post, we highlighted some tips for creating open offices for introverts – so that the layout works for them vs. against them. Today, we continue the discussion by focusing on how to create open offices for extroverts.
Before looking at some specific ideas, we would like to reiterate that extroversion does not mean “people-centric” or “social”. Rather, it simply – and solely – refers to how some individuals need to recharge their batteries. Introverts need time alone (or in small groups with people they know) so they can re-energize. Conversely, every now and then, extroverts need an external source of stimulation – whether it is a person or sometimes an item, like a software program or phone call – to re-energize. That is, sustained periods of isolation or lack of external stimulation can be draining.
Open Office Layout & Design Tips to Support Extroverts:
- Make it simple and easy for your extroverts to connect with team members, including those outside of their specific work group (which, after all, is one of the core fundamental of open offices). For example, strategically deploying chairs and tables – not unlike a coffee shop – is a great way for extroverts to “make the rounds” and engage with people, which as noted above, is something they need to do from time to time.
- Deploy circular or group seating, so that extroverts can informally congregate and start brainstorming ideas – which many of them love to do! You can support this preference by adding whiteboards or other elements, which make spontaneous meetings happen more often in open offices.
- If possible, allow your extroverts (along of course with your introverts) to change workstations or desks based on their needs or, sometimes, their mood. Note that this approach only works if communal workstations are equipped with the fundamentals: power outlets, supplies, LAN cables for Internet (unless Wi-Fi is being used), and so on. In this regard, first-rate hotel business centers can be a good model for open offices.
With all of the above in mind, please remember that extroverts do not like – or want – to be overwhelmed with people, things or anything else for that matter. They have a job to do, and endless interruption or loud “white noise” is not helpful. In addition to driving your introverts crazy, your extroverts will struggle to be productive, their work will contain more errors, and they will feel anxious and exhausted, instead of collected and confident.
To learn more about how open offices can fit the needs of both introverts and extroverts, contact the experts at Key Interiors today!