Bloomberg’s “open office plan” includes turning the White House’s East Room into a space where the President and his staff can work together — saving the Oval Office for “official functions,” he tweeted Monday.
One Twitter user said the layout “would rank in popularity somewhere between heartburn and terrorism,” while others pointed out that an open office would not be conducive to discussing matters of national security.
Bloomberg tweeted that the new layout will improve teamwork, but research has shown that open offices tend to have the opposite effect on workers.
One user said the layout “would rank in popularity somewhere between heartburn and terrorism,” while another suggested that Bloomberg use the money that would go into the remodel to “fix Flint MI’s water supply, or donate to DEM Senate candidates, or make an actual difference rather than fuel his ego project.” Others pointed out that an open office would not be conducive to discussing matters of national security.
A representative of Bloomberg’s campaign did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment on the origin of the suggested office layout or its reception online.
Despite Bloomberg’s claims that the proposed layout will make him a more effective leader, research has shown that open offices lead to mixed outcomes on workplace performance and wellbeing, to say the least.
Opens have been found to increase burn out, job dissatisfaction, and performance by eliminating privacy, Business Insider’s Allana Akhtar and Drake Baer previously reported. Bloomberg isn’t the only prominent executive to advocate for open offices in an effort to connect with their teams, however. Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon told employees that the investment bank’s executives will adopt open offices earlier this month, Business Insider’s Dakin Campbell reported.
The office layout controversy comes days after reports that Bloomberg used inmates in an Oklahoma prison to make calls for his presidential campaign. The campaign said it was unaware that the New Jersey-based call-center company ProCom that it contracted through a third-party vendor operated out of state prisons, and that it stopped working with the firm when it found out.