Cleaning up the office
In a recent survey, 57% of workers admitted to judging a colleague based on the cleanliness of their workspace. When it comes to productivity and a happy working environment, cleaning and decluttering your office can make a big difference.
Whether you’re the boss of a small business or just trying to organise your own space to be as focused as possible, we’ve gathered some great tips on keeping your space clean and organised.
Only keep what you need at arm’s length
When it comes to your desk and immediate workspace, a handy rule of thumb is to only keep what you currently need to be using at arm’s length. Yesterday’s coffee mug and the stacks of paper that have been there since last month need to go, to allow your desk to be free from physical and visual clutter. It is a lot easier to focus on the task at hand when you’re not performing evasive maneuvers just to get to your keyboard or pick up the phone!
In most jobs, all that you’ll likely need at arm’s length would be your computer, a phone, a few pens and a notebook. Add a family photo if it helps to get you through the day, but your stacks of paper should be filed somewhere that doesn’t cause you anxiety and out of your immediate field of view.
Set some limits
The paperless office is still probably a utopian dream for most workers. Even with the best filing system, you’re probably still holding on to a lot of unnecessary paper work, books or catalogues or half broken stationery.
While there is some paperwork that must be kept for legal compliance, most of the things sitting on bookshelves or in cabinets are probably past their usefulness. When you’re filing or storing new things, take a look at what’s already there and see if you can get rid of something in its place. You may not be in the decluttering zone at this point, but at least the problem isn’t getting worse.
Have a clean out of that “everything” drawer
I’m sure you know which drawer I’m talking about. Everyone seems to have that one drawer in their desks where things that don’t really have a place end up. Those rubber bands will no doubt come in handy when your boss confiscates your fidget spinner, but chances are that most items ended up in this draw because you “might need them one day,” not because you really do need them.
Setting a reminder on your calendar to clean out this drawer every few months will help you to stay on top of it before it gets out of hand. You could also use drawer dividers to make sure that everything has a place, which might help you to get rid of things before they even go into the black hole of the second drawer down.
Try not to eat at the desk you work at
There is something to be said for working lunches. But having a change of surroundings when you eat is good for creativity and keeping your mind fresh. It will also help to reduce the number of crumbs and sauce stains on your desk and help avoid the sideways glances or outright disgust from your coworkers.
Sometimes you’re so busy that it’s unavoidable, but if you do eat at your desk, clean up as soon as you’re done. Piles of plates and sandwich wrappers probably aren’t making you any friends, and your boss has more than likely noticed, even if they’re too polite to say anything.
Clean your electronics
E-waste can be a hassle to dispose of and it’s a big cost to be replacing keyboard and monitors more often than necessary. Get into a schedule of cleaning your electronics with electronic wipes, and have someone dust the inside of computers regularly to prolong their lifespans.
When electronics really are past saving, make sure you have them removed by people who are trained to dispose of e-waste correctly. E-waste in landfills can be a major problem, so do your part for the environment when that old Windows 98 PC finally dies!
Make a time to do an office-wide cleanout
Even if you follow the previous tips, there is always going to be an accumulation of junk that you really don’t need taking up valuable cabinet, shelf or even floorspace. Set a time with the whole office to go through all of the different areas piling up the unnecessary items. This could be old files or office furniture that is no longer in use, old catalogs from suppliers that don’t even exist anymore and even the old light fittings and scraps from the last time a tradie was on site fixing something.
Book a rubbish removal company in advance, so that everyone has a deadline to get their area sorted. When choosing that company, make sure that they are fully licensed and insured professionals who are trained to dispose of everything in the right way.
If you have office furniture that’s no longer in use, it can often be reused and a company like Junk2go do their best to dispose of items ethically, whether that’s donating to local charity shops or recycling materials where possible.
So give these tips a go and see if you can’t boost your productivity by removing the clutter. When it’s time for a major clean out, or you have a pile of dead electronics, give the rubbish removal experts at Junk2Go a call to help you do your part for the environment and keep a tidy and healthy working environment.