My ‘out of office’ experience

To cut it short – I haven’t got an office anymore. Well, technically I have a small desk in the main office where my team sits, but this tends to be busy and doesn’t really enable the privacy needed for many of my meetings. To put it into context: in the eternal churn of organisational restructuring, departments are moving and I’ve lost my office. Temporarily of course, and plans are already being drawn to alleviate the situation. It’s the fourth move in (exactly) two years, and so I’ve decided to embark on an experiment – kitted out with a laptop and a work iPhone, I’m now roaming the corridors, moving from my small desk to any other place that will have me. Minimalist that I am, I find this quite an interesting experience, having reduced my worldly work belongings to two crates (which were packed within 10min). While it’s obviously annoying to have no space ‘of my own’ in which to meet people, the flexibility is fascinating – being able to hide and work undisturbed in a crowd of students in the refectory or brasserie. Of course, technical problems amount (I’m so far unconnected to our office printer, wireless cover is patchy and a botched phone reroute has disconnected my extension), but the overall experience is inspiring. This will inform the discussion for our office redesign as well as my impulse to reduce the amount of paper I need even further. Learning experiences? Letting go of everyday frustrations, being visible to people you normally don’t meet and somehow trying to understand the essence of my work while living without the standard privileges. Overall good stuff so far – I’ll keep you posted if this will last.

December 15th, 2010 by