How you organize your work environment affects how your team behaves in that space, so strategically managing your office will help you create the company culture your team needs to hit their goals. Having a cluttered desk is not a sight that inspires one to have a productive day, much like waking up to a dirty kitchen. The appearance of clutter signals to your brain that there’s extra work to do before you can even start your daily tasks. When your brain feels overwhelmed by all this work, it triggers a stress response. Organizing your workspace reduces the frequency of that stress response, gives you a feeling of control and makes you more efficient.
You can take some easy organizational steps to quickly get ready for your day and not take up valuable work time.
Hide the Wires
Let’s face it; the wires can get out of control with all of the monitors, computer towers, mice, laptops, phones, and chargers that adorn the typical office desk. Because reducing visual clutter helps minimize stress, hiding all these messy wires is essential. Roll up the slack in each cord and slap on a binder clip. This tip will quickly organize the cord maze under your desk.
Use Wall Space to Your Advantage
Do you have free wall space near your desk? Don’t waste this valuable real estate. Instead, free up space on your desk by installing pegboards or wall shelves to sort mail, electronics, or office supplies. These times will still be handy and out of your way.
Organize your In-box
Email consumes a lot of our time and can get overwhelming quickly. Think of your email as your digital desk and keep it organized as your physical workspace. Create folders in your email to sort your emails into easily digestible information like to-do lists and even prioritize them. Taking the time to unsubscribe to various marketing emails like newsletters that you no longer want to receive will also be a worthwhile spend of your time instead of deleting them because this will ultimately reduce the number of emails you have to deal with daily.
First, look at your desk and throw away things you no longer need. That old grocery list, office depo receipt, or phone message should not be taking up space. Instead, get rid of the unnecessary paper from your workstation. Next, tackle the loose documents by using file folders. Bundle them according to topics that make sense to you and stack them. A pile of folders that look organized on a desk will look more pleasing than a pile of paper.
Implement a Workflow System
Pick a place on your desk as the “Things to Do” area and the file folder there. For example, folders with action items that must get done that day go on the right of your keyboard, and completed tasks go on the left. At the end of the day, the items on the left are removed from your workstation. This system will give you a sense of accomplishment, keep you on track to reduce the clutter on your desk, and organize your work environment.