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Inside an ‘untethered’ office

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In a move uncommon in the United States but more popular in Europe, international real estate brokerage CBRE Group took away its em­­ployees’ personal space—offices, desks and file cabinets—and converted to an “untethered” office. Even the CEO has no home base within the office, writes Los Angeles Times reporter Roger Vincent, who took a look inside.

Instead of separate offices or cubicles, em­­ployees show up each day and have a choice of working within one of 10 different “neighborhoods”—spaces where others are working on similar tasks—on a couch or even in the heart of the office near the front door.

Gone are desktop computers. Workstations have telephones, keyboards and monitors that em­­ployees plug into, and they can sit, stand or even walk on a treadmill while they work.

The office still has conference rooms for meetings and small booths for making those private calls. When they leave, they can store their laptops in a locker or take them home for the night.

— Adapted from “The Concept of an ‘Untethered’ Office Takes Root,” Roger Vincent, Los Angeles Times.

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