Date of Award

Spring 2019

Degree Type



Moore School of Business

Director of Thesis

Karen Mallia

First Reader

Brent Appling

Second Reader

Brent Appling


Open office plans have become the dominant style for creative workplaces, designed to encourage constant collaboration and proximity. Little research assesses the validity of that conventional practice, or the impact of open environments on creativity, productivity or employee satisfaction for introverts, who require time alone for highest functioning. Though the “Extrovert Ideal” permeates these industries, nearly 50% of the general population is introverted—and introverted traits correlate positively with creativity. This thesis includes a survey of 143 people working in creative industries, assessing perceptions of productivity and satisfaction along with personality type. A majority of respondents yearned for solitude to complete certain tasks. Findings suggest that open office environments may indeed undermine creative productivity, especially among introverts, and in turn, discriminate against nonextroverts. The study points to a need for broader inclusiveness of cognitive diversity in the creative industries, especially in light of “tokenism” and other marginalizing phenomena. Accommodating introverts may bring about a greater degree of career success for people on either side of the extroversion spectrum.

First Page


Last Page



© 2019, Rose Needle