Whether it’s a little cubicle or the corner office, our workspaces are a place we spend a lot of time. For those of us with desk jobs, you likely spend more time at your desk than you do in your own bedroom. As you spend time there, it begins to become a personal space that reflects your work style or even personality. Is your workspace a serene, orderly environment conducive to productivity, or does it look something like a war zone?
You may be thinking, “Why does it matter what my workspace looks like? I’m the one who works there.” Even though you may be the only one who uses the space, you aren’t the only one who sees it. Unfortunately, whether it’s an accurate reflection of your work or not, your workspace, because it is so personal, can create an impression of the kind of employee you are. So, take a look around. What does your workspace say about the way you spend your time there?
Do you have stacks of miscellaneous papers? Post-its all over the walls and monitor? Dirty lunch Tupperware or food wrappers? This type of workspace gives the impression that you have a lot on your plate, and that you spend a lot of time (probably too much) at your desk. A disorganized, messy workspace gives a negative impression and may create an invalid perception of your productivity and quality of work. You probably wouldn’t invite your boss over to a messy home; the same mentality should also apply to your workspace.
A tidy, well organized workspace not only promotes focus and productivity, it also gives an impression that you are on top of your work. Piles of unfiled papers and random unused objects and supplies on your desk can be distracting and make it difficult to find what you actually need. By keeping your workspace clear and staying on top of your paper filing, you create constructive energy and a positive image.
If you take a couple minutes before you leave the office to put away the things that collected there during the day, keeping your workspace organized will be simple task. Sometimes this means just putting everything in that handy “junk drawer” until you have more time to file or sort properly, but ending the day with a clean workspace means starting the next day with a clean slate and is an easy way to manage impressions in the workplace.
To a happy, healthy, productive life!