RE: Quiet workplace

Subject: RE: Quiet workplace
From: "Lathrop, Sarah" <Sarah -dot- Lathrop -at- citigroupfundservices -dot- com>
To: "Lyn Worthen" <Lyn -dot- Worthen -at- caselle -dot- com>, "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 3 Mar 2004 13:14:30 -0500

Lyn Worthen wrote:

I'm somewhat concerned, because we're about to move to another part of the company (a
cube farm) that has been lovingly dubbed "the monastery" because of the
near-total silence of the programmers working in that area. (In fact, when
they learned that we would be moving into their area, one of the programmers
asked if we could be quiet!) I'm already not sure how long I'll be able to
resist the urge to turn on Baroque music or Gregorian Chants just to break
the silence!



I understand totally. When I first got my current position five years ago, I was put into a cube-farm with all the developers and the director who was head of the group insisted on silence. It made for a very unreal environment. No one dared talk out loud so all conversations were done in whispers. One developer who started after I did said that on a good day it was like a library and on a bad day like a morgue. It made me think of the line from the Simon & Garfunkle song, "The Sounds of Silence" that says "silence like a cancer grows." Just as excessive noise is bad, too much silence is not good either. It is not natural to put a group of people into a room for eight hours a day and expect them not to talk above a whisper. Headphones were also taboo so there weren't many options. Thankfully, things have changed over the years and I am now in an area where conversation is allowed and so are headphones.


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