Window office at Microsoft, part deux

mentioned that in her group higher-ranker managers are getting windows
first. Interesting, maybe HR is different or maybe tradition holds only
in Dev/PM/QA orgs… I don’t know. Actually, I became a lead back in
1999 (I joined Microsoft at senoir developer position), so for almost
three years I had reports who were sitting in window offices while I
was sitting in the inner one.

Some people simply don’t want window office. I know at least one person
who has been more than 20 (!) years with Microsoft and always chooses
inner office. Window throws a lot of reflections on the monitor. In
depends on the office layout, though. Speaking of which…

Although everyone is free to set up office and he or she sees fit,
there are two most typical office layouts at Microsoft. One is when
developer places table near the window and sits facing the window with
monitor facing the door. This is good for window offices since light
does not fall on the screen. The second one is the other way around.

I prefer the latter so I sit facing the door and I can see the visitor.
I have to mention that each office has a door as well as
floor-to-ceiling one foot wide glass window facing the corridor. This
window has blinds to is can be completely blocked. I keep my blinds 50%
open so I can see who is standing next to the door. At the same time
person standing in the corridor can see if I am in the office. The
reason is that if door is closed it typically means that person does
not want to be disturbed. Therefore visitor does not knock and instead
may hover near the door for some time and see if office dweller will
wave, inviting the visitor in. I personally want to see who is there so
I can choose if I want to be interrupted 😉

Anyway, I am considering changing office layout so I can sit facing the
wall with window to the left. This way light from the window won’t
product too much reflections and yet I can see who wants to bug me when
my door is closed :-).

As for office layout, some folks bring leather couches, recliners, tables, rugs. So far I haven’t seen actual beds though… 🙂

Comments (7)

  1. From what I have read, that crosswise layout with window to your side is actually better. There are studies showing that sun enhances work and sitting to the side still lets you get that benefit while at least partially negating the glare and reflections.