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(The Atlantic)   "Why do people willingly work in cubicles when the fabric boxes make them so miserable?" Well, probably because it was a better option than running a Walmart cash register   (theatlantic.com) divider line 171
    More: Obvious, American Life, Americans, U.S. Steel, George Packer, division of labour, office space  
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5916 clicks; posted to Main » on 15 Apr 2014 at 5:35 AM (14 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-04-15 01:04:48 PM
Cubicles?  Luxury!

3.bp.blogspot.com

I have gone from an office to a cubicle to "open space" concept office over the past 15 years.
 
2014-04-15 01:12:34 PM

cards fan by association: I like working in my cube because I find happiness in the fact that I am providing for my family. Also, I like nice things and they cost money. I have often thought of trying to start my own business and "be my own boss" but that usually requires even more hours in a week. I just shrug and figure other people must be geniuses to scoff at a life of working since they have figured life out without doing it. Enjoy huffing your own farts guys.


About that 'be your own boss' business.

I have over a dozen employees.

I'd rather raise 36 girls, there would be less drama.

But hey, no one whines about my web surfing habits.
 
2014-04-15 01:15:40 PM
I never saw the problem with cubicles or an open office plan.  It's simple logistics really.  How much space are you going to allocate to each employee?

If you are opening an office in the middle of Nebraska, maybe there isn't much cost associated with it.  But for an office in New York City, or London, space costs a lot of money.  There is still a lot of mixed empirical data on efficiency too.  And, at least some percentage of your workforce wouldn't want a private office.  No really, I don't like it.  And if *everyone* has a private office, it's even worse.
 
2014-04-15 01:44:26 PM

serial_crusher: Buttknuckle: Buttknuckle: Deep Contact: I remember having several desks in a room and no cubes. Made for good rubber band wars.

We have an open office.  Here is what I have at my desk...

[i105.photobucket.com image 850x637]

That shiat is so obnoxious.  Any of those stupid foam darts that land in my cube immediately go in the trash.


Dude, lighten up.  Unless it goes on all the time, then I don't blame you.
 
2014-04-15 01:48:35 PM
Because I'm paid six figures to do so?
 
2014-04-15 02:14:15 PM
I used to like making a loud noise in the cube room and watch people play prairie dog.
 
2014-04-15 02:23:59 PM
We must do away with the absolutely specious notion that everybody has to earn a living. It is a fact today that one in ten thousand of us can make a technological breakthrough capable of supporting all the rest. The youth of today are absolutely right in recognizing this nonsense of earning a living. We keep inventing jobs because of this false idea that everybody has to be employed at some kind of drudgery because, according to Malthusian-Darwinian theory, he must justify his right to exist. So we have inspectors of inspectors and people making instruments for inspectors to inspect inspectors. The true business of people should be to go back to school and think about whatever it was they were thinking about before somebody came along and told them they had to earn a living.
 
2014-04-15 02:37:43 PM

Deep Contact: I used to like making a loud noise in the cube room and watch people play prairie dog.


We used to "Ping Pong"  our good for nothing manager.  someone would ask him a question, and just as he'd finish up the answer someone on the other side of the aisle would ask another innoxious question and he'd trot over to pontificate about it, then someone on the other side would ask another question...the goal was to see how long we could bounce this idoit from cubicle to cubicle. One morning we kept the volley going for ove an hour.

 "Joel, is the food truck going to be here today?"

"Oh Joel, do you think I should delete this email from my friend?"

"Joel, why is our company called " ABC software?"


/good times.
 
2014-04-15 02:50:05 PM

some_beer_drinker: when the fark will you sheep revolt, and take our gold back from the rich fat cats who are laughing at us? for farks sake...it it is way way past time.


Okay, how?
 
2014-04-15 03:00:21 PM
Umm...yeah, cubicles don't make office workers unhappy. Going to a job 8-10 hours a day to bust your ass and being told not to expect raises, having your health care costs rise or even having health care completely dropped as a benefit, all while watching the company rake in record profits makes people unhappy. Why people stay for abuse is a mystery, but then I don't have a mortgage, kids, or any debt I could not pay off tomorrow.
 
2014-04-15 03:09:52 PM

some_beer_drinker: We must do away with the absolutely specious notion that everybody has to earn a living. It is a fact today that one in ten thousand of us can make a technological breakthrough capable of supporting all the rest. The youth of today are absolutely right in recognizing this nonsense of earning a living. We keep inventing jobs because of this false idea that everybody has to be employed at some kind of drudgery because, according to Malthusian-Darwinian theory, he must justify his right to exist. So we have inspectors of inspectors and people making instruments for inspectors to inspect inspectors. The true business of people should be to go back to school and think about whatever it was they were thinking about before somebody came along and told them they had to earn a living.


Many people want to do the very bare minimum effort to survive. They are happy to do essentially nothing.

Most lazy-ass people who currently work a miserable job are not latent Michelangelos, lacking only the educational and philosophical opportunity for their creativity to blossom.

Even as a libby libtard, I reject your position and am very happy that your vision is not shared by the majority. Having some degree of responsibility is important for EVERYONE. That is not limited to the responsibility to do whatever it is you feel like dabbling in, accomplishing nothing.
 
2014-04-15 03:20:13 PM

Danger Mouse: Deep Contact: I used to like making a loud noise in the cube room and watch people play prairie dog.

We used to "Ping Pong"  our good for nothing manager.  someone would ask him a question, and just as he'd finish up the answer someone on the other side of the aisle would ask another innoxious question and he'd trot over to pontificate about it, then someone on the other side would ask another question...the goal was to see how long we could bounce this idoit from cubicle to cubicle. One morning we kept the volley going for ove an hour.

 "Joel, is the food truck going to be here today?"

"Oh Joel, do you think I should delete this email from my friend?"

"Joel, why is our company called " ABC software?"


/good times.


I think all the managers at my company do that to each other and use meeting rooms to do it.  I guess it works out better, but I haven't seen the budget for what they're paying those guys.
 
2014-04-15 03:25:50 PM

Pangea: some_beer_drinker: We must do away with the absolutely specious notion that everybody has to earn a living. It is a fact today that one in ten thousand of us can make a technological breakthrough capable of supporting all the rest. The youth of today are absolutely right in recognizing this nonsense of earning a living. We keep inventing jobs because of this false idea that everybody has to be employed at some kind of drudgery because, according to Malthusian-Darwinian theory, he must justify his right to exist. So we have inspectors of inspectors and people making instruments for inspectors to inspect inspectors. The true business of people should be to go back to school and think about whatever it was they were thinking about before somebody came along and told them they had to earn a living.

Many people want to do the very bare minimum effort to survive. They are happy to do essentially nothing.

Most lazy-ass people who currently work a miserable job are not latent Michelangelos, lacking only the educational and philosophical opportunity for their creativity to blossom.

Even as a libby libtard, I reject your position and am very happy that your vision is not shared by the majority. Having some degree of responsibility is important for EVERYONE. That is not limited to the responsibility to do whatever it is you feel like dabbling in, accomplishing nothing.


Actaully it's a quote from Buckminster Fuller (the geodesic dome guy).  I don't necessarly agree with the quote above either, as  idon't think a system like the one he describes would be sustainable. It's not human nature.
 
2014-04-15 04:07:46 PM
I prefer the bullpen style assuming the others around me are other engineers on my team as I think it helps promote collaboration and builds a sense of team. I don't really mind cubes either. Offices I found made people especially disconnected from their coworkers which can be bad during crunch time. I find it's a lot easier for people to snap at one another when they don't see them as people and teammates
 
2014-04-15 04:13:15 PM

DrPainMD: some_beer_drinker: when the fark will you sheep revolt, and take our gold back from the rich fat cats who are laughing at us? for farks sake...it it is way way past time.

And then what? The jobs that are done in cubicles will still need to be done.


I know it's off topic, but is your handle a Proud Family reference?

img2.wikia.nocookie.net
 
2014-04-15 04:34:27 PM

some_beer_drinker: We must do away with the absolutely specious notion that everybody has to earn a living. It is a fact today that one in ten thousand of us can make a technological breakthrough capable of supporting all the rest. The youth of today are absolutely right in recognizing this nonsense of earning a living. We keep inventing jobs because of this false idea that everybody has to be employed at some kind of drudgery because, according to Malthusian-Darwinian theory, he must justify his right to exist. So we have inspectors of inspectors and people making instruments for inspectors to inspect inspectors. The true business of people should be to go back to school and think about whatever it was they were thinking about before somebody came along and told them they had to earn a living.


It seems to me that a society like this would be even more rampant with crime and drug addicts than what we have now. Idle hands do the devil's work, and all that. While I think some folks could handle permanent loafing, I suspect most folks would suffer.
 
2014-04-15 06:59:54 PM

hubiestubert: OK, this was a great "office" to work from. The view from the Comerica Club in Phoenix...

Yeah, I'd rather have the space to do my thing, than be walled up in an office.


I agree 100% that your life looks awesome!   But then, my guess is you're an extroverted multi-tasker who's good at focusing.  My husband and I, on the other hand, need to be in offices, but for different reasons.

He: is an introvert and works from home, walled up in a very small area of our house all day.  Has the place decorated the way he wants it, and is happy as a clam that no one else sees it (or him).

Me: extrovert but ADD and not a multi-tasker.  Thus, I need to go to an office to chat with people and have discussions, but (a) the most productive and interesting discussions usually happen behind closed office doors, with only one or two other people where I am not trying to keep track of multiple conversations and reactions, and (b) I can't get real work done unless I shut my office door and focus on only one thing.

If my husband tried to be a chef, he'd end up killing someone on the first day, and I'd lose track of what I was doing and end up killing myself.  It's best for everyone if we stay "walled up."

In my field, which is heavily not-for-profit, the open-office plan was tried back in the 90's, on everyone (including senior staff and PhD-level researchers).  It was clear that it was done for no reason other than to save money, and the backlash was tremendous. Now, pretty much anyone above the analyst level always gets a real office.
 
2014-04-15 10:29:02 PM

FTDA: DrPainMD: some_beer_drinker: when the fark will you sheep revolt, and take our gold back from the rich fat cats who are laughing at us? for farks sake...it it is way way past time.

And then what? The jobs that are done in cubicles will still need to be done.

I know it's off topic, but is your handle a Proud Family reference?

[img2.wikia.nocookie.net image 640x480]


Never heard of Proud Family. I stole the handle from somebody on a Halo gaming site.
 
2014-04-15 10:58:43 PM

Snakeophelia: hubiestubert: OK, this was a great "office" to work from. The view from the Comerica Club in Phoenix...

Yeah, I'd rather have the space to do my thing, than be walled up in an office.

I agree 100% that your life looks awesome!   But then, my guess is you're an extroverted multi-tasker who's good at focusing.  My husband and I, on the other hand, need to be in offices, but for different reasons.

He: is an introvert and works from home, walled up in a very small area of our house all day.  Has the place decorated the way he wants it, and is happy as a clam that no one else sees it (or him).

Me: extrovert but ADD and not a multi-tasker.  Thus, I need to go to an office to chat with people and have discussions, but (a) the most productive and interesting discussions usually happen behind closed office doors, with only one or two other people where I am not trying to keep track of multiple conversations and reactions, and (b) I can't get real work done unless I shut my office door and focus on only one thing.

If my husband tried to be a chef, he'd end up killing someone on the first day, and I'd lose track of what I was doing and end up killing myself.  It's best for everyone if we stay "walled up."

In my field, which is heavily not-for-profit, the open-office plan was tried back in the 90's, on everyone (including senior staff and PhD-level researchers).  It was clear that it was done for no reason other than to save money, and the backlash was tremendous. Now, pretty much anyone above the analyst level always gets a real office.


A chef has to be a multi-tasker. There is an old saw about a line cook needs to be looking ahead a few hours down the line, a sous chef needs to be looking a few days down the line, and a chef...well, they're lucky if they are up to speed on what's happening right now, but when you're managing a kitchen, and actually working on that line as well, you need to be both IN the moment, AND able to detach a bit and plan out the month, as well as the next week in detail. It's a weird tightrope, but it's fun as Hells.
 
2014-04-16 02:25:21 AM

Guuberre: I'm sitting there one afternoon talking to a co-worker (she was facing me with her back to the break room) when someone else walked into the break room and farted. LOUDLY. It resonated. People have no awareness of their surroundings.
/CSB


Hell, some people I know...me included...would have done that on purpose.  Cropdusting is fun and all, but sometimes you just want to stop all productivity by blowing everybody out of their seats.
 
2014-04-16 01:21:15 PM

stratagos: some_beer_drinker: when the fark will you sheep revolt, and take our gold back from the rich fat cats who are laughing at us? for farks sake...it it is way way past time.

You first


I am so taking his tape dispenser when he gets up.
 
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