Yes, we have doors! When you write for a living, distractions from a noisy office can negatively affect your concentration, and the majority of what I do as a member of MCC’s public relations team requires concentration. Having my own office with a door I can close when I need to buckle down and knock out a press release, social plan or a 1,500-word contributed article is a blessing that not all agencies enjoy.
Open Concept vs. Private Offices
Many companies adhere to the open-office floor plan, but an integrated agency like MCC must take into consideration how each team might benefit or suffer from different work environments. While all of us at MCC enjoy coming together as a company to collaborate, we are also writers, creators, strategists, media planners, client liaisons and more. Many of these roles require us to take a phone or video call at a moment’s notice or to focus on projects for long periods.
And let’s be honest, if you’ve ever worked in an office with an open layout, you’ve no doubt experienced the much-too-loud, always-on-the-phone coworker. Don’t get me wrong, open-concept offices are great for collaboration and face-to-face interaction, but it can be hard to keep a co-worker from interrupting you when you are in the middle of a project without putting a Do Not Disturb sign on your back – which often has the opposite effect because it’s hilarious (yes, I’ve actually seen it happen).
Finding Balance in Public and Private Spaces
At MCC, we’ve struck the balance between collaboration and personal focus to create an efficient and effective workspace. While all employees have their own private offices, our suite also has collaborative spaces ranging from an open lounge area to large and small meeting rooms. This enables MCC employees to decide what type of work environment best fits their needs on a day-to-day, or even hour-by-hour, basis.
The naysayers might argue that having everyone separated out in their own offices stifles creativity and teamwork, but on the contrary, having our own space allows our creativity to flow without limits as can be seen by the individual personalities and styles evident in the way each person has set up their office. Additionally, MCC’s open-door policy encourages coworker interaction and communication, while also allowing employees to close their doors and focus when working on something confidential or when needing to limit distractions and interruptions. Similarly, MCC fosters open-dialogue, out-of-the-box thinking and creativity by providing various collaboration spaces, complete with floor-to-ceiling whiteboards, for meetings and brainstorm sessions.
In the end, the needs of your business and your employees should drive decisions about your company’s floor plan. A company that does most of its business through collaborative efforts might be better suited for an open layout, whereas a company that requires its employees to focus on individual projects might increase efficiency if its employees have their own offices. Integrated agencies fit both of these categories and must find the balance between collaborative and private spaces in order to succeed, something that MCC’s done for more than 30 years.