Whether you are completely digital-oriented or choose to go old-school using paper, the physical environment of your workplace can have a significant effect on your career productivity. So, organize your workspace!
In fact, according to the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO), disorganization of the workspace could result in financial losses equivalent to 10% of a manager’s salary to a company. And more importantly, a cluttered desk restricts your ability to engage and even limits your brain’s ability to process information which can lead to problems at work.
All in all, there is no question regarding the merits of clearing out your desk. An organized and serene environment might be just the right dose you need to get yourself motivated and succeed at your job.
1. Start With Your Computer
When thinking about organizing your workspace, the first aspect that comes to most of our minds is our office space or the desk in particular. However, the one thing that we use the most is our computer/laptop. If this go-to device is disorganized, then it could be the primary source of experiencing distraction even at a dream job.
So, the first thing you want to do is organize your computer storage. Start by assigning separate folders for personal and office files. The last thing you want to do is send the wrong item to the wrong person when you are in a hurry. You should also make it a point to delete the files that you don’t need anymore.
This digital decluttering can be a part of your daily tasks so that you will have a clean monitor to come to every day.
2. Clean Your Inbox
The next crucial decluttering should happen in your email inbox. Make sure the email in your inbox is only the email you need to work with in the future. File away emails thay you have already dealt with. Keep it clean. Think of it as cleaning out your resume. Do you really need that extracurricular to be listed in your CV? Or do you want specific work experience to stand out? In fact, when you get professional help from a LinkedIn Profile Service, the first thing they would do is get rid of unwanted job descriptions and skill sets that do not matter for your application. To land an interview, you need to interest the recruiter and your future employer. In other words, you want the hiring manager’s attention to go to your career accomplishments.
Similarly, the promotional emails you receive every day might be one of the main reasons for you to miss an important message about a meeting or landing a job for that matter. When you scan through your inbox, you want it to be clean and organized, and not overcrowded. So, make it a point to unsubscribe from unnecessary mailing lists at least once a week.
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3. Things you Need at Arm’s Length
One of the best ways to clean the clutter is to consider what things should be on your desk. Do you really need that dictionary or the old client files within your reach? Maybe you do not need all those pens, pencils, and highlighters when you hardly use one on an everyday basis.
Instead, you will have a clean desk if you get rid of those unnecessary items that make up the visual clutter. Even only this is a reason enough. For most people, you only need space for your computer, keyboard, mousepad, two pens, a notepad, and a personal item. Any other supplies can be kept in the storage.
4. Tag & Code
While the majority of us might have shifted to digital files, there might still be many professions that require dealing with papers. This can be a severe problem, especially when you can’t find a critical document when you need it.
That said, with all the tools and lifehacks available, it is easier than ever to organize your papers. It would be a good idea to tag them with a name or a color code. It will give you visual cues to quickly identify the file when in a hurry. However, remember to prepare a legend for which color is for what when creating this system.
Apart from this, you should also purge unwanted items, archive older files, and keep the system organized once every three to six months.
5. Get Creative With Storage
If you are one with plenty of storage on your office desk, then count yourself lucky. All you need to do is to keep your things tidy. However, if you do not have sufficient space, then consider it an opportunity to get more creative.
This doesn’t mean that you have to get a new desk or build an entire cabinet. Instead, you can keep your items organized in baskets or boxes. There are plenty available today, with different colors and patterns that can add personality and style to your workspace.
These will make your desk look cleaner, rather than having things scattered. Add a plant or two, and you have an Instagram-worthy workspace right there. You can also add storage to the walls by installing hooks or boards to attach papers.
6. Sort Your Junk Drawer
Let’s accept it: we all have that drawer where we just dump things (in theory, some don’t have one, but then, they wouldn’t be reading this).
Many of us throw things into drawers to keep them out of sight, which will give us the false impression that at least the surface of our desks is clean. However, this junk can only add up in time. It would be best for you to sit down once every month to clear out everything in these drawers. You might have to add a reminder in your calendar to do this regularly.
7. Know Your Habits
Before coming with your organizational plan, you might want to consider what your daily habits are. There is no point in keeping an item you use daily tucked away in storage. Instead, you will need quick access to them. Think of where you reach when you need a pen or a notepad—and assign their spaces accordingly.
Similarly, if you generally carry a bag, or coat to your workplace, designate a space for these things to stay out of your way.
8. Make Cleaning a Habit
Decluttering your workspace is not something that needs your attention once in a blue moon. Instead, by taking time every day to clean out, you can eliminate the mess from forming in the first place.
If you think about it, keeping aside just 10 minutes at the end of your workday can make a huge difference in maintaining a clean and organized workspace. Use this time to put back things where they belong, toss the garbage, wash the cups, and when possible, create a to-do list for tomorrow.
This might not fall into one of your ‘duties’, but it will certainly make your workday flow smoother and help you start every morning with a clear space and mind.
And if you are looking for a new office where you can re organize your office, we can help. Contact us today so we can show you how we can help you find the right office at the best price. No Obligation!