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I work for a large Company that has many hundreds of workers. Many departments in our Area of work are moving around as they try and make room for more workers.

I recently moved from a large set of 3 cubes each 7 foot square with a wide 6 foot aisle down the middle. They have removed all of those and now replaced them with 5 foot square cubicles with 4 foot aisles.

With this reduction in space I have very limited work space and pretty much no room for anything but my computer and 3 screens. (programmer)

How Do I you effectively start a conversation about this sort of topic in the workplace? No one around me has any power over the seating. nor do my superiors. And when I bring this up to my peers they seem to think this is an unstoppable change and not worth talking about. Just to deal with the smaller space and to have less things on your desk.

Can a Civil conversation be had in a workplace Or is this the sort of thing that makes employees find another employer?

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    No. All the departments around have been shrunk. Most of them are accountants and tend to have paper stacked to the roof but only 1 maybe 2 screens. I have 2 computers plus 3 screens and no paperwork. So my desk looks pretty tidy but i couldn't have paperwork on it if i wanted to. I have been looking at new desk layouts for the smaller space and am considering asking for a monitor mount to lift one screen up out of the way. But its still a concern to me that all this happened without any sort of consultation. – JimmyJazzx Jun 18 '15 at 20:23
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Expanding the Cubicles

Start by talking to your manager. Make your case for more space and see how he responds.

I'm unable to fit X, Y, and Z on my desk in the new smaller cubicle; this makes it harder for me to accomplish A, B, and C because [reason]. Is there any possibility that we could get slightly larger cubicles?

You'll likely get one of three responses:

1) "Nope. We're stuck with the new cubicles." (Possibly in the form of "I already asked the higher-ups, and gave them those reasons, and the request was denied.")

2) "Oh, I didn't realize it would affect A, B, and C. I'll work on getting the cubicles expanded."

3) "Oh, I didn't realize it would affect A, B, and C. I'll go back to the higher-ups and see if that's enough to get the old cubicles back." (Followed by either answer 1 or 2 when he hears back.)

An additional note - it's possible that, if this is a topic that's been discussed quite a lot, and the general consensus is "it's not going to change", then bringing it up with your managers again could give them a slightly negative view of you ("does he understand when to let things go?"). Depending on your relationship with them, you may want to factor that in when deciding whether to speak with them.

Should I stay or should I go?

As far as whether you should find another employer, ask yourself how this change affects your overall picture of this employer. Generally "I'm stuck in a too-small cubicle" is in the "con" column of your pro/con list, but if you've otherwise got a lot of "pro's" (like good pay, good experience, good benefits, etc.), then you may decide that it's worth putting up with a smaller cubicle in exchange. Or you might decide that it's the straw that breaks the camel's back. Only you can determine that.

  • Thanks for the advice. It seems like smaller space has been a growing trend for many years now. Who needs personal space anyway? I will try and bring a list of restrictions it has caused to there attention but it seems like if the space physically fits its big enough and im too many rungs down the ladder for this to matter. – JimmyJazzx Jun 18 '15 at 20:28
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    Given the costs involved with changing out cubicles, I'd say the OP has somewhere around a zero percent chance getting them changed. Although with enough employee turnover management might reconsider. Of course, I wouldn't wait around that long. – NotMe Jun 18 '15 at 20:28

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