Seating placement hazardous to your career advancement?

October 24, 2007 at 7:01 pm 2 comments

Why seat position plays such a vital role in your career and productivity

I’m sure if you have worked in an office, you have noticed that there are some workspaces within the office that are ideal for seclusion, quiet, and hiding from the boss. There are also those that are the exact opposite; crammed in a corner or in the middle of everything, next to the office trash can, or inline with the door where every person walking in can see your screen. Needless to say, the guy sitting by the door, let’s call him John, is most likely to be the least productive.

8:30 – Co-workers arriving at work says good morning, a short ‘what are you working on’, ‘how was your weekend’, ‘did you hear about . . .’, etc, etc.

9:30 to 11 – Everytime someone goes to leave (maybe use the restroom or take a smoke break) they then pass by John again. The passer-by figures well I am on my break, I can talk to John for a mintue or two.

12 – Now it’s lunch and most likely, 80-90% of the office is heading out to get lunch. John will most likely see all of these people either heading out, or if he leaves before they do, he will catch them on the way in. There may be less conversation during this period, but John still notices everyone filling in and out of the office.

1-4 – More smoke and bathroom breaks implies more people walking by, talking to and distracting John.

4:30-5:30 – Closing time. Now that the day is over, a conversation with a co-worker on the way out can’t hurt anything.

So now that you’re stuck in the high-traffic, high-distraction area – will your work suffer? Unless you start working 11 hour days, avoiding lunch, or just being rude to people, I have a feeling it will.

Maybe bosses take this into consideration and put the most productive people by the door, thus rendering themas effective as the less-effective workers?? Your guess is as good as mine.


Entry filed under: Realizations.

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Richard  |  October 27, 2007 at 1:19 pm

    How do you evaluate your own seat placement? Do you think there as certain job types or functions that would do better sitting in John’s seat? Maybe it’s not John’s placement, but the fact that people enjoy John’s company.

  • 2. jared  |  October 30, 2007 at 4:02 pm

    So pretty much John works from 1-4.
    If John works from home is he more productive or does he just substitute domestic duties for socialization?


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