Distractions Compromise Innovation
Chances are, between the moment you clicked this article and when you began reading this sentence, you’ve been distracted by something or someone. Distractions at work are so common, they seem to be the whitespace surrounding most workplaces. To overcome distractions and actually get work done, you may want to meet Brody. We’ll introduce you later in this article.
Rachel Feintzeig summarized the typical workday rather well in the Wall Street Journal when she claimed the “modern corporate workday for many is an eight-hour parade of distractions, punctuated by lunch.” Studies of Workstations show Rachel’s comments aren’t an exaggeration.
In 2008, the average length of time workers could focus at one time was 2 minutes, 18 seconds, according to studies conducted by Gloria Mark, Professor of Informatics at UC-Irvine. By 2012, the research showed our attention span was nearly cut in half. Punctuating how easily distracted we are, another of Mark’s studies found that within a single day, the average worker visits Facebook 21 times and checks e-mail 74 times.
Between 2008 and 2012, the average amount of time workers could focus on a task at one time was reduced by half.
In case it weren’t obvious by now, workplace distraction is a serious issue. Realizing that filling an office with cubicles isn't ideal and open layouts have their attractions, many companies have struggled to find a balance between open and private spaces.
If you’ve read our 2-part series on working remotely, you know that more and more offices are introducing furniture that prioritizes comfort in order to resemble homes and coffee shops. With the introduction of lounge-type seating, executives found that while workers were more engaged, they were still being bogged down by distractions at least every 11 minutes, spending 23 minutes each time trying to get back on task.
Compromises Made with Typical Office Lounge Seating
Many progressive executives should be commended for introducing office lounge furniture that makes their employees more comfortable. At the same time, however, it’s going to take more than comfortable seats to help avoid distractions. There are a few compromises one typically makes when choosing lounge furniture:
Compomise #1: ComfortThe first, ironically enough, is comfort. Lounge furniture may be comfortable to sit in, but the posture needed for working often strains worker’s necks or backs as they hunch over to see their computer screens.
Compromise #2: FocusThe second compromise made with Lounge furniture utilized for workers is focus. As if the distractions on one’s computer and phone screen weren’t enough, open layouts invite plenty of distractions as well. Co-worker conversations, other people's phones, and that one long-winded guy who enjoys regurgitating his favorite comedians’ bits (for some reason, every office seems to have one) all contribute to losing focus.
Compromise #3: Work Surfaces & PowerThe third compromise made with lounge furniture is the most costly. Lounge furniture doesn’t typically provide much work surface for computers or paperwork. Also, power connections are usually in short supply in the areas lounge furniture is located. This is a signal to workers that lounge spaces are not intended for work, but for comfort and socializing.
Lounge seating, while comfortable for lounging, actually strains workers' necks or backs as they try to see their computer screens.
The Innovation of The Brody WorkLounge
Thankfully, that problem is resolved in the form of the Brody WorkLounge (yes, this is the Brody we promised to introduce you to earlier). Designed specifically with the balance of open and private space in mind, the Brody WorkLounge creates a microenvironment allowing workers to be around one another without distracting each other. Brody gets its name from the combination of “brain” and “body.” How does Brody help your brain and body while you work?
Brody supports a worker’s posture.The Brody was designed with worker’s bodies in mind. With ergonomic features built in, workers are able to comfortably recline without straining to see their computer screens. Speaking of computers, or any other device with an electrical plug, the Brody has two outlets within reach of a seated user. One never needs to fear running out of battery again.
Brody helps workers focus and avoid distractions.To accommodate the brain’s ability to focus, the Brody WorkLounge was designed to be a shelter from visual distractions. Its wrap-around screen creates privacy and gives workers an enhanced sense of psychological security. They don’t worry about what could be behind or around them, and can focus on what is right in front of them… their work.
Brody supports work activities.With an adjustable work surface, a side work surface, outlets, a task lamp and an accessible space for a laptop bag or purse, the Brody WorkLounge was designed with today’s work in mind. Our experts at McCoy-Rockford are available with plenty more helpful information to help you create lounge spaces that aren’t just comfortable, but enhance office productivity as well.