Personality, workstation type, task focus, and happiness in the workplace

Erica Baranski, Casey Lindberg, Brian Gilligan, Julia M. Fisher, Kelli Canada, Judith Heerwagen, Kevin Kampschroer, Esther Sternberg, Matthias R. Mehl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The current study adds to the emerging interest in workplace person-environmental associations by exploring the interaction between employee personality traits and office workstation type (open bench seating, cubicle, private office) in predicting on-task focus and happiness. To capture an ecologically valid assessment of such interactions, 231 federal office workers completed momentary and global, one-time surveys. While global focus ratings were highest for private offices workers, there were no differences between workstation types in momentary focus ratings. Open bench seating was more beneficial to momentary focus and happiness for employees high in extraversion, while detrimental to momentary focus for those high on neuroticism. These results illustrate the importance of considering personality when designing work spaces that improve employee focus and happiness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number104337
JournalJournal of Research in Personality
StatePublished - Apr 2023


  • ESM
  • Focus
  • Happiness
  • Personality
  • Workstation type

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • General Psychology


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