The most disruptive office distractions, ranked

Photo by Dane Deaner on Unsplash


Of all the distractions that come with working in an office, the biggest is not the room temperature or the traffic sounds from outside. It’s ourselves.


In a survey commissioned by office-equipment maker Poly and conducted by research firm Future Workplace, 76% of respondents said a co-worker talking loudly on the phone created a moderate, high, or very high level of distraction for them while at work in their primary workspace, making it the most commonly cited disruption in the survey. Noise from a co-worker talking nearby was cited by 65% of respondents.

办公设备制造商Poly委托调研公司Future Workplace开展的一项调查显示,76%的受访者认为同事在办公室里大声讲电话会造成中高度或极高水平的干扰,这也是是此次调查中发现的最常被提及的干扰源。65%的受访者指出同事在旁边说话会对工作造成干扰。

The sound of coffee being made is a moderate to very high distraction for only 26%, while 46% said they were distracted by pets in the office (which was less than the 53% who reported moderate to very high distractions caused by visiting children).


The global study of designs and distractions in offices surveyed 5,150 employees who work at least three days minimum in a corporate environment.


There’s a growing backlash against open-office plans. Studies have found that open plans lead to decreased face-to-face collaboration and decreased productivity, particularly for creative people. Distractions at work are not just a problem for open offices, though. Only 61% of the survey respondents reported working in an open office, but 98% of everyone surveyed said they get distracted at work.


backlash['bæklæʃ]: n. 反冲;强烈抵制


Here are the most disruptive office distractions, ranked from worst to least worst, based on the percentage of respondents who described them as causing moderate to very high distraction levels:


1. A co-worker talking loudly on the phone2. Co-workers talking nearby3. Phone rings or alerts4. Office celebrations (birthdays, retirement, new babies, etc.)5. Nearby group meetings6. Visiting children7. Team games across the office8. Visiting family members (other than children)9. Tables games (table tennis, football, video games, etc.)10. Pets in the office11. Outside sounds (cars, sirens, weather, landscaping work, barking dogs)12. A colleague eating13. Heating or air conditioning system14. Copy machine/printer15. Coffee being made

1. 同事大声讲电话2. 同事在旁边说话3. 电话(手机)铃声响或发出提示音4. 办公室庆祝活动(生日、退休、生小孩等)5. 附近的小组会议6. 儿童来访7. 在全办公室范围开展的团队游戏8. 家庭成员来访(不包括小孩)9. 桌上游戏(乒乓球、桌式足球、电子游戏等)10. 办公室内的宠物11. 室外的噪音(汽车、汽笛、天气、景观美化工作、狗吠等)12. 同事吃东西13. 暖气或空调系统14. 复印机或打印机15. 磨咖啡

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