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Open and private meeting rooms: how to best manage your meeting room space

Views: 93     Author: Site Editor     Publish Time: 2022-08-19      Origin: Site


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We are currently experiencing a major shift in the way we work, including how we use our office space. Hybrid working has made office design a major focus for many businesses, who now need to make the most of the space they have. The more space an office wastes, the more money it makes, especially for those models where rent is calculated by the square foot. When it comes to meeting rooms, we need to make spaces that promote ideas, collaboration and provide a sense of community. Of course, the easiest way to create an inclusive and collaborative space is to throw away the physical barriers and create an open environment, but open spaces have their drawbacks.

So let's try to settle the debate: open space, or private room? Which one should you use for your meeting room space?

meeting room

Open versus private meeting rooms: pros and cons

There are pros and cons to any argument, so let's start with open spaces.

Open plan meeting rooms

Most industries have moved past the days of cubicles (thank goodness!) ), the modern office is now a bright, open area that promotes collaboration and fosters a real community among workers. However, many businesses still choose to keep their meeting rooms separate from the main work area.

The meeting room is the heart of most meetings and indeed the heart of the office. This is particularly true as more and more people return to the office after working remotely. The meeting room needs to be the place where people come back together and re-establish the community within the office.

The advantages.

Open meeting rooms promote participation, collaboration and community

They make the office feel more inclusive

Fewer walls mean lower design costs

Open meeting room spaces can feel larger and more welcoming - which is probably what people are looking for in the wake of the pandemic.

The downside.

Fewer walls can lead to more distractions.

Open meeting rooms are not suitable for private meetings or sensitive conversations

When you remove the walls of a meeting space, you open it up to noise problems - allowing noise to enter and leave the space.

Private meeting rooms

Private meeting rooms are a more traditional setup. They are separate from the hustle and bustle of the main office floor and provide a quiet, safe place for employees to work.

Offices that do not provide private rooms for employees often have space management issues. Employees may need to take a private phone call or discuss a work topic that is only for a specific group of workers. This means they need to fight for a quiet corner, swap workspaces and leave the office floor in disarray.

The downside of private rooms is that they can make collaboration and ideation more difficult, as they can exclude employees who might have something to contribute to the discussion.


Private rooms allow for personal and business-related privacy.

Private rooms are quieter. They allow you to leave the noise of the meeting in the room and exclude the noise of the office.

A private meeting room space will provide a break for your workers from the distractions of a busy workplace.


Private meeting rooms can give the impression that leadership and management are not interested in transparency.

The walls around your meeting room are literally a physical barrier to communication.

Private spaces are less inclusive than open spaces.

By this stage, you likely haven't figured out which is the better option, and there's a reason for that. There is no 'best' solution in this debate. A good office space needs to work for everyone, which means you need to balance open and private features.

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