Keeping your workspace clean and organized may seem like a daunting job, but if efficiency is a priority for you, then it’s worth it to take the time to get your desk or office organized. Having a clean desk makes you look more productive. Knowing where everything is makes you more productive.
To really do the job right, you need to get back to your original workspace and give it a deep cleaning. Clear off your desk (even if at this point, everything is going into a box) and thoroughly clean the surface with a disinfectant spray. This will get rid of dust and any lingering germs. Use this opportunity to clean the computer keyboard, phone, draw pulls and other high-touch surfaces. Repeat the procedure until all the desk drawers and shelves are cleaned. Next consider deep cleaning the flooring and furniture. You can search for upholstery or carpet cleaning near me or use a mop and sanitizing solution if you have tile. Once everything is cleaned completely, put a weekly reminder on your phone for a weekly wipe down of all heavily used items and spaces.
If most of the work you do is on the computer, your computer is likely at the center of your desk. Reserve sacred space to the right of your keyboard (if you’re right-handed) for whatever else you need related to what you are working on. When you finish with that task, immediately remove those papers or files to another area, keeping that little square of real estate dedicated to whatever is the task at hand. Don’t pile papers here, and don’t put your coffee cup here. Keep the one-foot square space for current work only. Commit to keeping this area uncluttered.
Create additional space by moving all technology that you can off your desk. If possible, move hard drives to the floor under the desk or to an adjacent filing cabinet or table. Do the same for modems or routers or large desk phones that are not used often.
Instead of stacking tray upon tray to handle every possible configuration of work, simplify your system to two main categories: to do, to do something else with. The “to do” should contain individual folders or neatly binder-clipped documents that need work done on them. Once the work is done, the papers get shifted to the “something else” basket. This pile contains a neatly labeled stack of work that needs anything else done to it. If your boss needs to sign it, put a tab on it with that information and put it in that tray. If it needs to be mailed somewhere, do the same. If papers need to be filed, ditto. When you get to work each morning, spend 10-20 minutes working through the “something else” basket. File what needs to be filed. Send the reminder “papers are ready to be signed” email to your boss. Walk the documents down to the mailroom. Once you have worked through as much of this basket as you can in the allotted time, return your focus to your “to do” tray.
You may love pens and sticky notes, but how many do you need on your desk at one time? Round up everything but your very favorite office supplies (like the pen you dig into your desk drawer to find even though there are three others right in front of you), bundle them together with a rubber band, and put them in a bottom drawer. If for some reason, you need an additional pen, you’ll know right where there are, but extra pens won’t be rolling across your desk. Tidy up your cords and cables so they are out of your workspace. Keep a trash and recycling bin handy so that you can clean up in real time. Give your desk a once-over before you leave and reset everything for the next day.
Decluttering, cleaning and organizing your workspace can save you time and mental energy each day. Take control of your desk for your own wellbeing. You will probably find yourself better able to tackle work problems more efficiently.
Publish Date: April 7, 2020 8:13 PM