No matter how large or small the office is, we’ve all had those times when we struggle to concentrate on our work due to the excessive amount of noise around us. While office gossip is fun and times but when you have work to complete, overhearing conversations between colleagues can get slightly irritating. To add to it, these days the phones don’t stop ringing, printers are constantly running, there are footsteps in the background, and when we’re that troubled, we can even hear the computers humming.
Do you know that studies suggest that a noisy office can cut down employee productivity by almost half? A study in 2014 observed that an average office going person loses around 86 minutes of their work hours daily, succumbing to distractions around them!
When trying to work, a noisy workplace can often lower an employee’s morale; hence efforts must be made to reduce office noise. The question is, how?
Here are certain ways to reduce or combat excessive noise at your workplace:
- The division layout of the office may need to be altered. If you work in an office with an open floor plan, try breaking it into sections. That will help in redirecting the way that sound travels. You could use dividing walls or tall cubicle walls and, in fact, even make use of high-backed chairs or couches to break the flow of the noise. You may also add a pop of color by adding a modern design acoustic wall panel designed especially for muffling sound.
- Appliances that make noise and are not needed around you, like fax machines, printers, or servers, can be put in a separate room to cut down on the noise they create. To reduce the humming sounds of computer towers, you must place them in cabinets that help absorb the sound.
- It is inevitable for people to discuss. However, to lower the noise in the workplace, you could have a separate conversation place. It can be small meeting rooms or even phone booths for people in the office to take calls. That way, you wouldn’t have to overhear people talking while you have a deadline to meet, and also, proper office decorum will be maintained.
- Soothing white noise can actually cut out on all those mundane voices of appliances, fans, etc. Thus, you could invest in a sound masking machine that will help you create a soothing environment and reduce the unwanted sounds around the office.
- All work, including shifting of furniture or heavy objects that may lead to creaky sounds, including having the office place cleaned properly, should be left for weekends or holidays to avoid having to sacrifice productive time due to the noise around.
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