This is Broken: Office Door

I am a huge fan of Seth Godin’s This is Broken TED talk. He gives several examples of “broken” design, and talks about the different reasons things are broken.

In that spirit, I offer a morning observation of brokenness.

This sign is posted on an office door in the building in which I work. Here’s a transcription:

a closed door means...

A closed door means that at this moment the reception desk is not staffed.

Thus, knocking will serve no purpose.

We apologize for the lack of a phone or a buzzer at the door.

Your options are:

Contact the person you are supposed to meet with to ask them to let you in, or
Wait a minute for someone to come in or out.

I think Godin would classify this as “not my job” – someone felt they could make the sign, but didn’t feel that they could order a door buzzer installed (or just unlock the door). In any case, a locked door invites knocking, and this sign is an indication that knocking serves “no purpose.” Broken.

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