Place of Productivity

A reader writes:

Dear, Anita,

I have been on a mission to revamp my office space from one filled with distractions to one that encourages productivity. I am having difficulty clearing out and organizing my desk and removing clutter off of my desktop. Do you have any suggestions or tips that may help?

Thanks for your question. For many of us, we are bound to our desks 8+ hours out of the day, 5 days a week. The typical American has a little more than 16 waking hours per day, meaning that 50% of our workdays we spend at a desk. It is important that this space be a work environment that harbors and promotes productivity so we can get the most work done in tPlace of Productivityhe time we have. Here are some tips for making your space as functional and productivity-friendly as possible:

There is almost nothing more difficult than trying to streamline your thoughts when your desk is a cluttered mess. Have you ever tried running through waist-high mud? Neither have I, but I assume it would be much more difficult than running through air. Discard any memos, Post-its, or other unnecessary items, and develop a system for organizing incoming papers and papers for current, future, and completed projects.

With the usage of electronics in our lives and work place, we are beginning to have our desk overrun by power cords, phone chargers, USB cords, etc. It is becoming a wired jungle! To keep these wire weeds at bay, start by rearranging your desk so that the appropriate cords are closest to the electronic they are paired with. It doesn’t make much sense to run your phone cord across your desk when you could just move the phone closer and save the cord space.

Set aside some dedicated work time where distractions and interruptions are kept to a minimum. I suggest taking about 2 hours per day to strictly focus on work. Inform your employees that you are not to be disturbed unless it is an emergency or an urgent matter.

Finally, don’t be afraid to experiment with different work station arrangements. Many people have tried and raved about swapping out their office chair for an exercise ball a few days a week. Try working from a different side of your office every few months to change your outlook. Brighten up the color palette in your space to breathe new life into your surroundings. Bring in pictures of your friends and family, or a few shots from a recent trip you just took.

For an example of an office redesign, check out this video on Feng Shui for the Office:

The opportunities to create just the right space for your productivity are endless. Take the time to put your own personal touches on your space, dedicate time to yourself and your projects, and free yourself from wire entrapments and cubicle clutter.

Do you have an interesting work space, or are you trying out any new unconventional office furniture arrangements? Post them in the comments!

Well wishes,


9 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Barbie Puls
    Apr 09, 2013 @ 21:19:13

    hello there and thank you for your information – I’ve certainly picked up anything new from right here. I did however expertise several technical points using this site, as I experienced to reload the web site a lot of times previous to I could get it to load correctly. I had been wondering if your web host is OK? Not that I am complaining, but sluggish loading instances times will often affect your placement in google and could damage your high quality score if ads and marketing with Adwords. Well I’m adding this RSS to my email and could look out for much more of your respective intriguing content. Make sure you update this again soon..



    • anitaclew
      Apr 11, 2013 @ 08:25:38

      Thank you for letting me know and I apologize for any issues you have experienced. I will certainly investigate this issue and see if I can come up with an explanation.

      Thanks again!



  2. Summer Daza
    Oct 10, 2012 @ 15:05:26

    For me, my workplace have a huge effect on my mood and on how I will be working. Whenever I hit road block, cleaning and organizing my work station gives a little breathing space to my swamped up mind. I sometimes bring my work to a new place, it kind of helps me focus and concentrate. It’s like having a new work but only the environment changed.
    One other productivity tip that I find pretty effective is loving what you do. Delegating or outsourcing some tasks you don’t like and are not happy to work with means a lot of time to work on the tasks you cared about. You’d be more inspired to work even better.



  3. m.capriola
    Jul 25, 2012 @ 10:23:58

    I used to do office work, and we worked out a few procedures to minimize clutter.

    First of all, electrical cords should run thru a hole provided in the modern desk. If you have an older desk, the cord should run from the gadget straight to the back of the desk and down the wall. (Under the desks would be a tangle of wires, though. LOL)

    When I did Accounts Receivable and had my own personal desk, I put my computer on a separate table at right angles to the main desk. I’ve watched people try to spread documents on their desk and then reach over them to work the keyboard. And then they’d wonder why they get carpal tunnel syndrome. The keyboard, like that of a typewriter, should be on the edge of the desk closest to you. Keep your hands up and do not rest your wrists on the desktop.

    On the main desk I had an IN basket and an OUT basket. I found a small bookcase in storage. Here I had a file-folder organizer where I kept my ongoing projects, and worked on them one at a time. If I needed more documentation from another department for a particular bill, that folder would go into another file organizer until I received the required documentation and could finish the billing.

    I used to work late on Mondays and come in half a day on Saturday when the phones would not be ringing off the hook. After I moved to another department in that company, the Accounting Office solved the phone-us interrupt-us problem by setting aside certain hours each day when the main switchboard would not transfer any calls over. This saved on overtime and increased production.

    And as Treb pointed out, only keep necessary things on your desk. That’s why God gave us desk drawers.



  4. Rayviona
    Jul 23, 2012 @ 08:43:21

    It seems like you need a assistance!



  5. Linda Alvarez
    Jul 18, 2012 @ 16:32:44

    I’m in desperate need of Employment, I’m asking for further help in my job placement. Your staff has sent me on 1day assignments and just today sent me on one to only cancel 31mins before starting the shift. I not only struggled to afford the gas to drive across town



    • anitaclew
      Jul 19, 2012 @ 15:57:11

      Hi Linda,

      I am sorry to hear of your difficulties. As much as I would like to help, I am not an employee of The Select Family of Staffing Companies so I will not be much help there. On the upside, I can offer a few valuable pieces of advice. I suggest that you speak directly to your recruiter and express your concerns. You will want to let her know that you are very interested in finding long-term work and also how far you want to drive from home. I am sure that the recruiter will do his or her best to find a position that is ideal for you. Best of luck and thanks for the comment!




  6. treb
    Jul 17, 2012 @ 16:42:53

    Simply organized things which only necessary on desk.



  7. pravinchn
    Jul 17, 2012 @ 08:14:29

    Reblogged this on pravinchn.



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Anita Clew's blog posts are intended for general guidance and should never be taken as legal advice. In all instances where harassment, inequity, or unfair treatment is believed to be present, please consult your HR Department or legal representation.
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