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Organize Your Workspace For Maximum Productivity

2011 March 24

Office design and environment have not always been part of the corporate consciousness. Cubicles and green-hued florescent lights may save money on office space and energy, but they create the most unattractive atmosphere known to humans. If you have a home office or a small business, here are some ideas to banish the cubicle culture and create an office space that can help increase morale and productivity.

Comfort is always, always part of the equation. You might not want to sit in front of your computer or sit working the phones for long periods of time each day, but at least you can make sure the physical act of sitting there is not uncomfortable.

You may be in the process of building your dream office, but if it falls short in terms of comfort, it doesn’t matter how the color schemes and natural light work together.

A good, supportive chair is arguably the only piece of office furniture that you shouldn’t skimp on. Purchase something that feels good and that provides support to your back and core. You can position your desk so that you don’t have to slouch to reach your phone or keyboard.

A cramped office can be depressing. Whether you are working at home or at a company office complex, chances are you will wish that you had more space. There are two ways to increase the amount of space (and the feeling of openness) in your office. One is to eliminate unnecessary objects. Eliminating that extra chair or bulletin board overflowing with layers and layers of pictures, notes and invoices can truly make a difference.

A smaller desk, smaller book shelf or smaller filing cabinet can also be advantageous. Go with what you need (don’t skimp), but ask yourself if you will actually use any space-eating furnishings. If the answer is no, take it out of your office or replace it with something that is a better fit. Another option is to store unused or less used materials in boxes or filing cabinets. If possible, you can put them under desks, in exterior cabinets or closets. Even a free-standing closet or cupboard can be useful. It will allow you to stack things up rather than spread them out. This will create more floor space.

Natural light is a major positive feature for offices. Unless you are prone to staring out the window and daydreaming, sunlight is more attractive than artificial light. It can stimulate your mind and keep drowsiness from stealing your concentration from the task at hand. Florescent lighting is a money saver, but overhead fixtures can cast light that is hard on the eyes. Luckily compact florescent bulbs (CFLs) can act just like standard bulbs. This allows you to save money on energy and also install lighting that can be placed closer to your workspace. You can turn it on when necessary to illuminate your workspace or eliminate harsh shadows caused by overhead lighting.

Lighting is also advantageous to your attitude. If no natural lighting is available, you can improvise. Some pictures with backlighting can at least add light to the room from a non overhead source and can act as a “window.” Sure, it’s not the same as actually having a window, but definitely better than nothing at all.

If you workplace allows you, you can set up a small fish tank (there are plenty of shelf-top ones that are 2-6 gallons). Again, the reason for doing this, if you can’t look outside, at least you can have something natural and attractive to look at while working. Plants or flowers have the same effect. You can get a small light to shine on them while you work.

Nicole has been blogging for 3 years; she currently contributes to blogs about how maximize personal savings on a small budget.

8 Responses leave one →
  1. March 28, 2011

    Great article. Also if you can afford a large monitor or even two monitors it can save time switching between applications. Sharing data between applications is becoming more common.
    I often have my E-mail program open in full screen mode.

  2. April 16, 2011

    Ha ha ha… I think the universe is trying to send me a message! I don’t currently have a formal workspace and end up working all over the house… sometimes on the dining room table, other times on the couch and I even resort to working in my room. I laughed when I saw this post because it is the 3rd post I have stumbled across on the topic in the last week… so perhaps I should listen to the message!

    Laura – I crave having dual monitors!! But then I would need a permanent table to set it up on!!

  3. May 4, 2011

    This article is very detailed, very good …. looking forward to a better creative!

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