The “Perfect Workspace”, Perfectly Illustrated

by . March 21st, 2015

The “perfect workspace” will always be different for each of us. But science gives us a pretty good idea what the best workspace for most of might look like. 

Visual News sent us this infographic detailing ideas architectural theorists Chistopher Alexander,  Sara Ishikawa, Murray Silverstein, Max Jacobson, Ingrid Fiksdahl-King, and Shlomo Angel detailed in their highly-influential, critically-acclaimed 1977 book A Pattern Language: Towns, Buildings, Construction.

The book has been updated several times throughout the years, but its core principles remain relevant.


Key Factors:

  • You can see at least 2 people, but no more than 4
  • You are aware of at least 2 people, but no more than 8
  • You have at least one coworker in talking distance
  • You work in at least 60sq feet (5.6sq meters)
  • You don’t hear noises different from the type you make. This probably means your contact center workers should be away from your IT folks, etc
  • A wall should be behind you for a sense of privacy
  • No blank wall within 8 feet (approx 3 meters) in front of you  so you could rest your eyes
  • Nearby sitting circles
  • No one sitting opposite you and facing you.
  • Pools of light over the workspace.
  • A wall to one side 50-70% of space enclosed by windows/walls
  • Thick walls
  • A half-open wall
  • Open shelves
  • Windows overlooking life

More: 14 Ideas for Optimizing Your Workspace [Infographic]


  • These ideas can be applicable even in certain assembly-line settings
  • In my opinion, fair access natural light should be considered a legal right for most workers, given the how detrimental the lack of it is not just for morale, but overall health.
  • The ability to maintain a healthy workspace counts, and isn’t really covered in the book. You don’t want a theoretically nice workspace to get covered in crud after a few months.



How livable is your workplace? Does it matter for you? Comment below!

Disclaimer: YouTheEntrepreneur is not affiliated with the author of the infographic or any of the sites mentioned. 


Arthur Piccio manages YouTheEntrepreneur and has managed content for major players in the online printing industry. He was previously BizSugar's contributor of the week. His work has appeared multiple times on The New York Times' You're the Boss Small Business Blog. He enjoys guitar maintenance and reading up on history and psychology in his spare time.