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Research about office workplace activities important to US businesses ‐ And how to support them

John Olson (Vice President, BOSTI Associates, 25 Bates Farm Road, Ridgefield, CT 06877, USA; Tel: +1 203 438 1611; Fax: +1 203 431 3118; E‐mail:

Journal of Facilities Management

ISSN: 1472-5967

Article publication date: 1 January 2002



A research‐based approach was used to develop business supportive office workplace design concepts during individual projects for multiple US‐based clients. Together, the databases for those projects represent about 13,000 responses to data‐gathering questionnaires. Analysis was done across those responses to determine whether there were common patterns or findings that would be of benefit to the design community. The results of this across‐project analysis show that the two workplace qualities that consume the largest portion of the workday and have the greatest effects on individual performance, team performance and job satisfaction are support for distraction‐free solo work, and support for impromptu interactions anywhere in the workplace (but primarily in or near individual workspaces). The noise generated by conversations of all kinds can be an impediment to distraction‐free solo work, creating a potential conflict. Effective workplace design can both enhance support for these two most important activities by themselves, and allow them to coexist effectively within the same individual workspace areas.



Olson, J. (2002), "Research about office workplace activities important to US businesses ‐ And how to support them", Journal of Facilities Management, Vol. 1 No. 1, pp. 31-47.




Copyright © 2002, MCB UP Limited

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