Most of us spend a great deal of time at our office desk, often hidden behind piles of documents and files, not to mention collections of pens, reading glasses (me!) and mail. Wouldn’t life be grand with a workspace that you loved, and were inspired by every time you walked in? Here are a few tips to help you put together the perfect space before your next big project:
The Design. Pick a color palate that energizes you, and makes you feel productive. Also, choose an overall “theme” for your office, so you can easily create a cohesive design. If you can’t paint your office walls, there are creative ways to bring in touches of color, from framed art pieces to fun bulletin boards.
The Furniture. If you’re working from a home office, spend ample time on your desk and chair selection. These items will take up the most space, contributing both to the design aesthetic as well as the functionality and ease of your workflow. Look for something stylish, but comfortable. I mentioned the importance of a comfortable environment in my previous post, Business Etiquette: Tips to Increase Your Productivity In the Workplace.
The Technology. Is a desktop computer, laptop or iPad the best choice for your office and work style? Maybe a combination is the perfect fit to help your job run smoothly. If you’ll be inviting clients into your office, will you need technology upgrades as well, such as a wireless projector? Make sure to purchase a good printer, one that connects to your devices via Wi-Fi or USB, and don’t forget to keep extra printer ink on hand.
The Calendar. Finding the most efficient way to keep track of your appointments and deadlines is essential to professional success. There are many options to choose from, a daily planner, a calendar that goes on the wall, a desk calendar or making use of your technology. For important dates, always input them into your phone or tablet with a reminder attached to send an alert the week, day or hour before. Go over your planner at the beginning and end of each week to maintain organization and ensure you will be on time and on top of things.
The Essentials. Don’t forget the stapler, tape, pens, pencils and sticky notes. While most offices provide these items for you, they won’t bar you from bringing in your own unique items. These are all must-haves for a home office to function efficiently. Have a designated place on your desk for these items, as they tend look cluttered quickly. Spend some time finding colors that will match the overall theme of your office or desk space; no one said you are stuck with a black stapler!
The Java. Keeping a beautiful coffee station in your workspace provides a much-needed boost mid-day, and makes serving a warm latte to your best client a breeze when he or she drops by with an impromptu request.