If you walk onto the floor of a typical American insurance company office, you will see a sea of cubicles (at least for those American insurers that still have offices and do not mandate telecommuting). The cubicles are usually personalized with such things as college football memorabilia, family photographs and, in the case of one claims representative we know, a large buzzard. Such a floor plan stands in marked contrast to a visit to the London marketplace where there are no cubicles, but rather row after row of office tables where colleagues sit side-by-side and face-to-face. Few personal mementos are visible. According to new research, the American approach might be better for personal health and productivity as the absence of office privacy “can lead to emotional exhaustion and burnout.” Is this a case of the American way being better, or simply a reflection of a stiffer constitution across the Pond? You make the call.
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