Maximize Productivity by Rethinking Your Workspace

Woman at desk

You know the basic rules for organizing a workspace, such as bringing in a plant to brighten the mood and improve focus, but the rules are evolving.

The flexibility afforded to us by technology, as well as a deeper understanding of how our surroundings affect us psychologically, has led to a slew of sometimes contradictory information on how to create a productive office environment. The right amount of lighting, for example, is up for debate, as is the effectiveness of an open floor plan.

There are, however, several essential steps to creating a more dynamic work space:

  1. Create a computer-free zone - A computer-free work zone invites collaboration and can ease the energy-zapping strain of sitting behind a desk. Simply adding a small sofa or armchair to the office creates a comfortable space for brainstorming, making business calls and more.
  2. Sit (or stand) up straight - Placement of your monitor and even keyboard can affect how you feel throughout the day. Make sure your screen is at eye level and your desk is situated so that hands, wrists and forearms are parallel to the floor. You can also experiment with the increasingly popular standing desk, or alternate between standing and sitting while you work on different tasks. Placing certain files and supplies nearby, but out of arm’s reach, will enable you to take those brief but necessary breaks.
  3. Clear virtual clutter - It’s debatable whether a messy desk hurts or helps productivity, but most people agree that a cluttered computer screen causes chaos. Avoid the inevitable document pile-up by sorting digital documents into three files labeled “inbox,” “in-progress” and “completed.” There are also dozens of distraction-blocking tools available online that will eliminate the mess of having multiple tabs and windows open while trying to work.

Though few of us have the ability to completely control our work environment, these simple ideas can have a great impact without completely overhauling your current office design. By taking the time to make these minor changes, you can transform your surroundings into a more positive, more productive space today.

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