Day two of our mission to help you de-clutter your lives and living space. Today we talk about your office/desk space… now hands up, who has a desk that looks like a bomb has hit it?
Top 5 Tips to Cleaning Up Your Office
1. Clear your desk – That’s right, everything off!
Now you have a visible surface to polish and also a clean slate on which to start. Take a look at all the items that are now on the floor and ask yourself two things 1) What do I use on a DAILY basis? 2) What needs to be in reach? (This is where you have to be tough) ONLY the answers from those two questions get to make it back onto the desk everything else needs to be binned, recycled, filed or sold!
2. Book Cases, cupboards and shelves
A book case or storage cupboard is an invaluable asset in your office for giving items somewhere to live, however it is not to be used as a permanent filing stop gap for folders, books and binders, and so here’s what we are going to do…
1) Look at all books that you own and ask yourself do you need it? Is it relevant now (what are you keeping that 1980’s version of stream line your office for)? Will you ever read/re-read it? Depending on your answers…
a) Sell them (Psst! Try not to rush out and buy more books to replace the old ones!)
b) Donate them to your local library, Chamber of Commerce or Local Business Hub (not your Mills & Boon stuff obviously)
c) If you really must keep all of your books, think about storing them elsewhere if they are not needed regularly. See this great post I came across to give you some ideas and inspiration “Top 5 Book Storage Ideas You Wish You Thought Of”
3. Paper, paper, paper
Ah paper, the life blood of us office types. We have masses of paper all over our offices; in drawers, binders, filing cabinets, folders, old notebooks etc. But how do we cut down on it and how do we aim to reach the utopia of a paperless office?
1) Remove your name from mailing lists – see our post yesterday about Junk Mail
2) Paperless Billing – By swapping to electronic bills you will not only save trees but it is claimed 171 pounds of greenhouses gases, 63 gallons of water and 4.5 gallons of fuel annually for each paperless household, pretty impressive right for a small switch? Now if we could just find a way to stop them billing us in the first place…
3) If you still have to use “Snail Mail” for remote clients or friends why not tech it up a little by using digital snail mail over the internet? Will save you have stores of paper, envelopes, stamps etc and free up a tad more space in your office
4. Manage it – You will need a recycle box/bin and a two tiered filing tray labeled with “To Do” and “To File” – now go through your piles and they can only end up in one of 3 places!
4. Let’s Not Get Too Personal
It is nice to personalise your office; have some comforts and make it individual to you, however, a little too much personalisation can distract you and I take it you are at a desk to work and be productive? Ask yourself (time to be tough again) Do you really need 14 pictures of your children/dog/recent holiday/loved ones?? Yes we know you love them but resit the urge to daydream or get lost in the picture by keeping it for the home
5. Tidy up Time!
Impose your own clear desk policy, especially if you are a home worker. At the end of every day the last 10 minutes should be sent getting your desk in order for the following day – In a survey conducted by OfficeMax it was said that 77% of people claimed that a messy office had a negative impact on their productivity, we don’t want that, we want to be in the 23% of productive people, we have goals to achieve this year, yes?
Now let’s get cracking… everything off your desk!