Blog: The Office

The workplace has evolved alongside our economy and lifestyles. The early 20th century saw the office get treated like the production line, efficiency, speed and organising workflow were priorities. Then throughout with the post World War 2 economic boom of the US, businesses became corporations and shifted from a customer focused business model to a shareholder focused model. This was compounded by political corruption and ordinary working class people being tricked into thinking the stock market was a valuable asset to the economy. With this rapid capitalist ascension, the conditions of the office became increasingly worse. This peaked in the 1980s with the dystopian grey cubicle hellscape. This was a result of the corporate worlds push to increase efficiency and profitability, at the direct expense of the human beings they employed. The 1990s and early 21st century brought an on paper more progressive work environment that claimed to have learnt from previous conditions and valued employees. These new modern office spaces brought progressive ideas like hot desking and open plan office spaces. They also brought an arms race from corporations to be seen as the most progressive and fun work environment. These ideas were most prominently featured in the office spaces and eventually the massive campuses of the behemoth tech companies that took up residence in Silicon Valley. Google’s California campus is the jewel in the crown of Silicon Valley and was idolised as innovative and revolutionary for employees and work environments. The business world lapped up policies like employees never being 100 meters away from food and having slides as alternatives to stairs. But ultimately they just gave the grey cubicles a coat of vibrant overly stimulating paint.


I’m Aidan Moore, a Graphic Design student at University Centre St Helens.


Any questions or queries, get in touch in the following ways.


Based in St Helens, Merseyside, UK

close-alt close collapse comment ellipsis expand gallery heart lock menu next pinned previous reply search share star