Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Millennials can't stand the din

Yuh-oh, could it be that our under-age 35 workers have delicate ears--and that this could sound the end of open space floor plans?

Jessica Leigh Hester, Government Executive Magazine, June 16, 2016, says the giant-sized slides, free meals, skateboard halfpipes, and boozy Fridays are nice perks, but workers really want silence.

Oxford Economics surveyed more than 1,200 executives and non-senior workers in industries such as health, retail, manufacturing, financial, and government. The majority said they worked  in open-plan offices (74%). Half were Millennials.

Uninterrupted work time topped all the employees' wish lists.

More than half complained about noise. Many wore headphones or sought quiet corners to work.

The supervisors, in the other hand, reported (69% anyway) that their spaces were noise reduction conscious.

Obviously construction and transportation are noisy. Thirty million US employees are exposed to hazardous noise levels.

But even below hazardous, noise can be distracting.

Comfort level is 48-52 decibels. Whispering clocks are around 3 dD. Chatting is 60 dB.

Employers might want to nvest in Quiet Zones. Many commuter trains have Quiet Cars.

There is also a giant felt helmet to block out noise and movement. I think that would be distracting in itself.

But a little funny, too.

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