One of the biggest problems with working in an office is the noise. People chattering, printers spewing documents after document, and not to mention the never-ending footsteps. As the distracting noise increases, your productivity drops.
Soundproofing Your Cubicle
You are not the only one dealing with noise pollution in the office. Practically every office workers have to deal with this problem on a daily basis. To mitigate the office noise that drives you crazy you can do the followings:
#1. Lay down some carpet
From an acoustic standpoint, tile flooring is just terrible. Tile flooring makes sound bounce around needlessly creating an annoying echo. Carpet can be hard to maintain but its excellent soundproofing properties may just worth the extra hassle.
Sadly, not everyone can make the call to switch the entire office flooring into carpets. Don’t be down, though. You can add rugs on your own cubicle. The soundproofing effect won’t be as prominent, but you can still notice the difference.
#2. Use acoustic panels
People normally use acoustic panels to transform an ordinary desk into a cubicle. You can, however, take advantage of its sound reducing capability to absorb unwanted sound.
Since acoustic panels are lightweight you can plaster them on your cubicle walls without worrying if the walls could take the extra weight.
If you find acoustic panels are too costly, go with acoustic foams. They are far more affordable yet equally effective in reducing unwanted noise.
#3. Fight noise with noise
Sometimes, deliberately making your cubicle “noisy” works in your favor too. Now, before you call us crazy, you should know that it’s based on facts. Sound masking in office environments is a real thing. The idea is using a specific kind of non-distracting noise to drown the distracting ones.
Although sound masking is usually achieved using expensive sound-masking machines, you do have alternatives. One of them is simply to play pink noise on your computer. For added effectiveness, you can wear noise-canceling headphones.
#4. Work together with others
We all know that trying to deal with an issue on your own may sometime prove to be futile. Now is a good time to talk with your coworkers about how to tackle this noise pollution issue together.
Working on a consensus such as not using speakerphones, muting phones, and speaking instead of yelling can take time. However, once everyone realizes the benefits, things will turn for the better.
#5. Increase the cubicle wall’s height
Short walls block do very little in blocking unwanted noise so raising the walls should be a no-brainer.
This method, however, may result in a situation where each cubicle has different wall heights. Yet another good reason why you should discuss with your coworkers and employers about how tall the wall should be.