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Image credit: <thefutureisminenow.wordpress.com

Image credit: <thefutureisminenow.wordpress.com>

I realized something today:

I could never work in an office with closed walls (or high cubes).

Or rather, it would be much more difficult for me to be successful in that sort of environment.

At my company, open spaces (organization-wide) are relatively common. The executives and other senior leaders always have their doors open.

I thrive in open office spaces. I like to collaborate – and when you don’t have to knock to reach out to a co-worker they just feel so much 1. I am *not* saying I just walk up to people and start talking… just that it’s easier to approach someone when they aren’t behind a wall.more accessible1 

…I suppose collaboration happens in more closed off office environments as well, but having worked in both environments I think I can say with confidence that in closed environments people simply keep to themselves more. They engage with one another less. They share fewer ideas.

2. Well… maybe a little.I’m not sayings that closed office environments are bad in and of themselves. 2 Rather, the larger point I’m trying to get at here is that success is often as much a product of one’s environment as it is one’s talent.

Collaborative people need to work with others who are inclined to collaborate. Conversely, someone who works best alone will suffer in an environment in which teamwork and networking are integral components of success. Further to this point, self starters need to work in environments that allow them a certain degree of autonomy, and those that need direction won’t thrive in environments in which they must direct their own time. Etcetera, etcetera.

In making a decision on fit, a good Talent Management professional has the responsibility to look at not just what a candidate has done in his / her career to find success, but also to look at what variables contributed to that success. If the factors that made a candidate successful at their old company are not a part of the culture / business environment at yours, the candidate’s success may not be transferable.

…Or maybe I have it wrong.

Tell me in the comments section below.

As always, please share your thoughts in the comments section below.



If you have questions about something you’ve read here (or simply want to connect) you can reach me at any of the following addresses: 

SomethingDifferentHR@gmail.com OR rorytrotter86@gmail.com