It is hard to overestimate the transformative effect a clean and well-planned office can have on a disordered and chaotic work style. Productivity has been linked to cleanliness and order in numerous studies. Without exception, the output of punctual, high-quality work is significantly higher from companies that maintain a high level of cleanliness and take pride in the appearance of their workplace.
Big businesses thrive on order because it allows them to complete processes efficiently, and because of the psychological effect that an ordered appearance has on both customers and employees. Anyone walking into the workplace of a company will be instantly struck by a positive impression if it is maintained to a high level of order and cleanliness. The rationalization behind this is that if a company takes the time to diligently keep everything in good order, they are likely to be similarly conscientious in all that they do. These same effects translate into the home office environment and your own perception of yourself. You can trick your brain into being more productive, just by maintaining an open, bright, comfortable and clean space to work in.
By creating an ordered environment, you will be setting yourself up for success. When you step into your office, if you are greeted by clean clear surfaces, bright open spaces, and well-organised systems with easy access to everything you need, you will feel a flood of positivity and relaxation. You will feel supremely confident and ready to tackle the tasks for the day. On the contrary, walking into a messy, cluttered environment is likely to give rise to the feeling that everything is out of your control, and make the same workload seem infinitely more daunting.
With a home office, you have the advantage of being able to create a space that is completely suited to your tastes and needs. There are some aspects of designing your office layout that should be a given. For instance, always ensure that everything has a place and regularly used items are kept somewhere easy to reach. Other items that are less regularly used can be stored neatly out of sight, so that surfaces are kept clear of clutter and diversions to your attention. To this end, nothing unrelated to your work should be allowed to cross the threshold of your home office.
However, your personal tastes can dictate the furnishings, dÃ©cor and equipment you do allow into your haven. If you find a particular print sets your mind at ease, you can hang this on the wall. If you like to listen to Mozart as you work, you can install a stereo system. If nothing else says tranquillity to you like the sound of a trickling stream, you can bring in a stylish water fountain. Your ultimate goal should be to create a place solely dedicated to work, but also a place in which you feel happy, relaxed and focused.
Advantages can be drawn from the choice and layout of your office furniture. Positioning your desk near a window will allow natural light to filter in, which will have an energizing effect on your body and mind. Light coloured dÃ©cor will accentuate this effect, while plants and soft music can help you to feel relaxed and maintain concentration. Ample storage to ensure surfaces are kept clear and files are kept in an organized manner is essential. Perhaps most important though is your choice of seating. Office chairs should be ergonomically designed to maximize comfort over a prolonged period of sitting. Many office workers suffer with chronic back pain due to improper seating being provided at work, so be sure to research and experiment with what is most comfortable to you.
When you enter a well-planned and organized office, it will seem that there is nothing you cannot handle. A change in your office scenery can lead to hugely positive effects in terms of productivity and quality of work, as well as peace of mind and overall happiness.