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     An Inviting And Organized Office

Today's business world is busier then ever. With pressure to do better, deadlines to meet, the need to succeed and all the compotation it is vitally IMPORTANT to have neat and organized work space. You're taught how to be a good business person -- but were you ever TAUGHT how to be a more organized person?

It's important that you see your workspace as a complete ENVIRONMENT -- not just a desk you sit at. It should be comfortable and pleasing to you, otherwise you won't enjoy being there and won't be productive when you are. Ask yourself some questions:
  • Do you like the color of the walls?
  • Does the artwork resemble your TASTE?
  • Are your awards and accomplishments displayed?
  • Is your desk SPACIOUS enough for you?
  • Do you have proper lighting while you're working?
  • Is the TEMPERATURE too warm or cold?
  • What is the noise level like?
  • Do you hear conversations on the other side of the wall?
  • Does the FURNITURE inside your space match?
  • Is it comfortable? Is there too much or not enough?
These are just some of the questions that come to mind when I think about organizing work space. Here are some tips for creating that most COMFORTABLE work space that invites you inside.

This will cheer you up and BRIGHTEN the room. It's very easy to add color -- bring in a plant, rug, or colorful throw for a chair. Display a small amount of your favorite hobby, artwork, family, your accomplishments, certificates, and awards. This also creates a conversation piece for clients and makes them feel more comfortable.

Make sure the LIGHTING is good -- if you are straining your eyes to see, you will be uncomfortable as you work. A lamp is not going to cut it. Overhead, track, or can lighting is more appropriate for distributing light around the whole area. Also make sure your office is at a pleasant working TEMPERATURE -- not too hot and not too cold. And finally, pay attention to the NOISE level around your office. Soft music or a white noise machine can eliminate a lot of low-level noise, but loud distractions should be addressed if it is going to interfere with your work performance.

It is hard to work and move around in an office that has too much furniture -- and a lot of unnecessary visual CLUTTER is distracting. Keep your work space layout simple and functional. One spacious desk, a set of filing cabinets, and a comfortable chair are usually plenty -- and if you have visiting clients, provide a comfortable chair for them. If you don't need a conference table in your office, lose it -- you can meet in a common conference area. And go easy on the ACCESSORIES -- like lamps and organizers and racks and carts. And make sure you can walk easily to your desk without stepping over stuff. Don't overload your space with stuff. You do not want your clients to think you are a clutter bug and can't control your office.

Don't keep your work SPREAD all over your desk all the time. Work on one project at a time and when you're finished, put it away. Keep your projects in a drawer of a filing cabinet and you will always be able to put your hands on them without having them laying around -- out of sight doesn't have to mean out of mind. All your office SUPPLIES should be behind a cabinet. Keep an inventory sheet inside the cabinet and mark the sheet when you take something out -- that way, you'll never run out. When you need to add a new supply make sure to add it onto the inventory sheet.

Challenge yourself everyday to keep your desk top NEAT. Look at each thing on top of your desk then ask yourself "Do I use this on a regular basis and do I need it at my finger tips?" Do you really need 50 pens on top of your desk? If not, put it inside a drawer or file it away. Only keep out things you absolutely use on a REGULAR basis. Everything else must be put away.

Lastly, treat your work space as you would your FAVORITE spot in your house. After all this is where you spend most of your time. Make sure your furniture and equipment is in good shape, take care of what you own, and personalize your office so it makes you feel GOOD to be there. Our work has evolved around our lives and we cannot step out of it. But I hope that by incorporating at least one of these tips it will help you to bring about better used space inside your work area.


Nancy Scott is a professional organizer. You may visit her website at www.nspersonalorganizer.com. Contact Nancy at or 412-561-3678.

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