According to the authors, workers in open plan offices tend to move around more, as opposed to people in cubicles and private offices. The results were surprising considering the derision many people feel for the open office paradigm. Workers in open offices were 32% more physically active at their jobs than employees in private offices, and 20% more active than people working in cubicles. Most importantly the workers who were more active had “14% less physiological stress outside of the office compared to those with less physical activity at the office.” Physiological stress is the response to an external stressor like our environment, which triggers a biological response in our bodies. It’s clear that open offices significantly promote “Enhanced physical activity,” which results in a much “Reduced physiological and perceived stress” when compared to cubicles or private offices. If we promoted an approach to work-life balance that included reasonable office hours, paid vacation, and break times, I have a feeling that the layout of our offices would have very little overall impact on our physical or mental health. In any case, the group’s research clearly indicates that our offices affect our health.
Read more on goo.gl/B2uu5a.